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Friday, January 11, 2013 - 12:34am
WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Barack Obama signed a bill Thursday requiring DNA collection from anyone arrested on a felony.
It's named after New Mexico State University student Katie Sepich who was raped and murdered in 2003.
The bill also provides states with the start-up funding for the DNA collection database.
At the time of Sepich's murder, New Mexico did not collect DNA from felony arrestees.
Katie's killer was not identified until three years later, after his conviction for unrelated crimes.
Katie's family fought to change that and started advocating "Katie's Law", which passed in 25 states.
Katie's mother, Jayann, said it was a big move, but the job is not yet done.
"We're just very thankful and we know that this funding bill will be big for the remaining 25 states to pass laws that translate into more lives saved,: she said. "This is a giant step forward but theres still a long road ahead..."
The funding can last for up to three years.
Jayann tells NewsChannel 9 she's already scheduled to speak at two legislative sessions in Kentucky and Indiana later this month.