New Zealand Police v Shull [2017] NZDC 17314

Published 09 February 2018

Application for suspect compulsion order — Criminal Investigation (Bodily Samples) Act 1995 s 13 & 16 — bodily sample — whether there was good cause. The police suspected that the defendant committed a burglary on the basis of a DNA profile obtained from blood stains found at the scene of the crime. The police applied for a Suspect Compulsion Order requiring the defendant to give a bodily sample to the police for evidential analysis. The issue for the court to consider was whether in all the circumstances, it was reasonable for the court to make that order. The analysis of a bodily sample obtained pursuant to an order would provide reliable evidence to prove or disprove the defendants involvement in the burglary. Without the evidence, the police did not have a case at that stage and there are no other suspects. The court weighed this idea with the sense of unease that came from questioning whether the DNA had been fairly retained by the laboratory when there was insufficient evidence that a previous crime had occurred. The court ultimately found that it was not reasonable to make a suspect compulsion order and the application was declined. Judgment Date: 8 August 2017 * * * Note: names have been changed to comply with legal requirements. * * *