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One in ten of the population of England has its DNA held by the police.

Technically, 9.6% or 4,906,467, compared to a population for England of 51M. Shocked? I am dumbfounded.

As Lord West of Spithead was good enough to break down the figures by policing region, I have compared those to county populations and graphed them. The highlight is the DNA-happy Northumbria police which holds DNA samples for 13% of the population. Note that Newcastle is policed by that constabulary. At the other end of the scale are Gloucestershire and Surrey at 6%. Note that constabularies do not always map neatly onto historic county boundaries, with the Thames Valley covering Bucks, Berks and Oxford.

I ran out of enthusiasm before tackling Wales (Scottish data is not given), but 302,341 DNA samples are held for a population of 3,004,600, or 10% of the population.

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Blogger Obnoxio The Clown said... 2:49 pm

It's worse than that, because in general, a DNA sample can be used to match families as well.  

Blogger Croydonian said... 2:51 pm

Good point. Diabolical, isn't it?  

Anonymous formertory said... 7:40 am

Scotland's slightly different, theoretically, in that the Police are obliged to remove samples from the database where there's no prosecution or conviction. I suspect the proportion of the population with a DNA record will be rather lower.

And yes, it is diabolical.  

Blogger JuliaM said... 1:13 pm

"I ran out of enthusiasm before tackling Wales..."

Figures would be suspect anyway, as most of the DNA will be very similar... ;)  

Blogger Croydonian said... 1:36 pm

Tut tut. I've got at least one Cambrian regular.  

Blogger JuliaM said... 4:25 pm

I think I've probably got some from the Cambrian era... ;)  

Blogger Croydonian said... 4:40 pm


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