Schmidt, Upchurch Introduce DNA Evidence Legislation
PRESS RELEASE: Office of Jean Schmidt, Ohio State Representative
COLUMBUS, OH (March 8, 2022) – Last week, State Representative Jean Schmidt (R-Loveland) and Terrence Upchurch (D-Cleveland) introduced House Bill 586, legislation to allow DNA evidence to be considered during a trial regardless of who ordered the testing.
“I saw the need to introduce this bill after learning about Tony Apanovitch, an innocent person currently on Death Row,” said Schmidt. “There was DNA evidence that could prove Tony was innocent, but because he did not ask for the testing to take place it was inadmissible. This bill will change that to ensure those who can be proven innocent aren’t stuck on Death Row because of a technicality.”
Current law stipulates that DNA evidence can only be considered if the defendant requests it, a technical loophole within the Ohio Revised Code. The technicality has resulted in innocent defendants being falsely prosecuted and even placed on Death Row.
Schmidt says the existing DNA loohole is a true injustice within the legal system.
“This legislation will fix this loophole and ensure that any defendant has the ability to prove their innocence, and that any DNA evidence can be used regardless of who ordered the testing.” – Jean Schmidt
H.B. 586 now awaits referral to a committee.
State Representative Jean Schmidt is serving her first term in the Ohio House of Representatives. She represents the 65th house district, which includes northwestern Clermont County.
For more information, contact Rep. Schmidt’s office at (614) 466-8134 or email@example.com.