Sheriff's office to begin new inmate DNA collection soon


    Tulsa County Sheriff's Office (KTUL)

    As common as the sight of the color orange, so too will soon be the practice of collecting DNA at the jail.

    "We’re anxious to get it going," said Casey Roebuck of the Tulsa County Sheriff's Office, ready to start training to get the program up and running.

    "There is value in collecting DNA at arrest because it could potentially help solve other crimes," she said.

    "Who knows? Twenty years ago, if we’d had DNA, we could have maybe solved Dena’s case sooner," said Larry Dean.

    Few people have waited longer for justice than Larry Dean, father of murder victim Dena Dean.

    "I think the idea of checking everybody’s DNA when they get arrested, getting a DNA sample, I think that’s the best thing they’ve ever done," he said.

    "Well, it's very concerning to me," said social activist Marq Lewis, saying, hold on, this is an invasion of privacy.

    "They’re taking our DNA without our permission, and we haven’t even been committed of a crime, and that’s a big thing," he said.

    "They got DNA samples from me years ago. They come to my work one day and got a swab," said Dean.

    From Larry's perspective, if you haven't done anything wrong, you've got nothing to worry about.

    "Let's do the swab, cotton swab in the mouth and go, 'cause I know I’m not guilty of anything," he said.

    "DNA has links to family lineages, so when you’re taking, just say me for example, my DNA , you’re taking my lineage of my family, and I don’t think people are going to feel comfortable about that," said Lewis.

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