Warantless Blood Tests for DWIs Causing Concern in the Supreme Court

Posted on Jan 11, 2013 in Courts, DUI/DWI, Legislation, National Issues

Is a non consented blood test considered an unreasonable search and therefore prohibited under the Fourth Amendment?

On Wed, January 9, 2013 the Supreme Court heard arguments about a Missouri man who was given a nonconsensual blood test in order to secure evidence in a DUI case.

In October of 2010, Tyler G. McNeel was pulled over by Missouri State Highway Patrol Officer, Mark Windam, for suspicion of driving under the influence. McNeel had bloodshot eyes, slurred speech, a strong odor of alcohol, and admitted to consuming a single beer. After refusing a blood test and breathalyzer, McNeel was arrested and taken to a nearby hospital for a blood test.

The problem is not the blood test itself, but the lack of warrant for the blood test. Officer Windam had plenty of evidence to obtain a warrant, but chose not to try. Windam’s argument was that in the time it would take to get a warrant, the blood alcohol level would decrease and there would be less evidence for the arrest.

If you’ve been arrested for DWI, Bloom Legal can help. Call us at 504-599-9997.

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