The bill, called Katie Sepich Enhanced DNA Collection Act of 2012, is named after a New Mexico resident who was raped and murdered in 2003. New Mexico already has a similar law on the books and it is known as Katie’s Law.
Sepich’s killer was only found after he had been convicted of another crime and his DNA was compared to other crimes.
Senator Tom Udall and then-Senator Jeff Bingaman introduced a Senate version of the legislation in March of 2011.
“Katie’s parents have dedicated their lives to making sure their daughter’s murder resulted in meaningful action,” said Udall. “Today’s bill signing is a credit to their work and determination and means that other states can set up DNA collection programs like New Mexico’s to help catch dangerous criminals and prevent heartbreaking tragedies like Katie’s from happening in the future.”
U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich was a cosponsor for the bill as a member of the House. All three members of the House from New Mexico were cosponsors of the legislation.
The bill was introduced in 2010 by then-Rep. Harry Teague.