CODIS stands for Combined DNA Index System. This is a nationwide database comprised of DNA profiles. Included are the profiles of convicted offenders, profiles developed from evidence in unsolved cases, and miscellaneous profiles such as missing persons and unidentified human remains.
The CODIS Section at the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory is responsible for obtaining and analyzing DNA profiles for for all arrested and convicted felons. in the state. The program was initiated in Arkansas in 1997 when legislation was passed approving the collection blood samples from criminals convicted of sexual and violent offenses. In 2001, burglary was added to this qualifying list of crimes, and in 2003 Arkansas became an all-felony state (Act 1470 of 2003), meaning that DNA samples were collected from every person convicted of any felony. In 2015, Act 543 expanded existing legislation to allow for the collection of a DNA sample on all felony arrests.
At the Arkansas State Crime Lab, the CODIS section works closely with the ASCL DNA casework section. Many of the evidentiary profiles developed by the DNA casework section are searched within the Arkansas database against other cases and the profiles of convicted offenders. Many of the samples are also searched throughout the national system on a weekly basis.
All fifty states, two federal labs, and twenty-seven foreign countries participate in CODIS. For detailed statistics on the success of this program, please see the link below.