SUBSTITUTE SENATE BILL 5896





                        57th Legislature

                      2001 Regular Session

Passed by the Senate March 13, 2001

  YEAS 48   NAYS 0




President of the Senate


Passed by the House April 19, 2001

  YEAS 94   NAYS 0



I, Tony M. Cook, Secretary of the Senate of the State of Washington, do hereby certify that the attached is  SUBSTITUTE SENATE BILL 5896 as passed by the Senate and the House of Representatives on the dates hereon set forth.




Speaker of the

      House of Representatives






Speaker of the

      House of Representatives



Approved Place Style On Codes above, and Style Off Codes below. 





Governor of the State of Washington

                   Secretary of State

                  State of Washington



                    SUBSTITUTE SENATE BILL 5896



             Passed Legislature - 2001 Regular Session


State of Washington      57th Legislature     2001 Regular Session


By Senate Committee on Ways & Means (originally sponsored by Senators Constantine, Kline, Hargrove, Costa, Thibaudeau, Kohl‑Welles and Regala)



Providing for additional DNA testing of evidence. 

    AN ACT Relating to DNA testing of evidence; amending RCW 10.73.170; and adding a new section to chapter 10.73 RCW.




    Sec. 1.  RCW 10.73.170 and 2000 c 92 s 1 are each amended to read as follows:

    (1) On or before December 31, ((2002)) 2004, a person in this state who has been ((sentenced to death or life imprisonment without possibility of release or parole)) convicted of a felony and is currently serving a term of imprisonment and who has been denied postconviction DNA testing may submit a request to the county prosecutor in the county where the conviction was obtained for postconviction DNA testing, if DNA evidence was not admitted because the court ruled DNA testing did not meet acceptable scientific standards or DNA testing technology was not sufficiently developed to test the DNA evidence in the case.  On and after January 1, ((2003)) 2005, a person must raise the DNA issues at trial or on appeal.

    (2) The prosecutor shall screen the request.  The request shall be reviewed based upon the likelihood that the DNA evidence would demonstrate innocence on a more probable than not basis.  Upon determining that testing should occur and the evidence still exists, the prosecutor shall request DNA testing by the Washington state patrol crime laboratory.  Contact with victims shall be handled through victim/witness divisions.

    (3) A person denied a request made pursuant to subsections (1) and (2) of this section has a right to appeal his or her request within thirty days of denial of the request by the prosecutor.  The appeal shall be to the attorney general's office.  If the attorney general's office determines that it is likely that the DNA testing would demonstrate innocence on a more probable than not basis, then the attorney general's office shall request DNA testing by the Washington state patrol crime laboratory.

    (4) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any biological material that has been secured in connection with a criminal case prior to the effective date of this act may not be destroyed before January 1, 2005.


    NEW SECTION.  Sec. 2.  A new section is added to chapter 10.73 RCW to read as follows:

    Nothing in this act may be construed to create a new or additional cause of action in any court.  Nothing in this act shall be construed to limit any rights offenders might otherwise have to court access under any other statutory or constitutional provision.


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