August 23, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/
-- There is perhaps no worse feeling for a motorist than seeing flashing lights approaching from behind. When the police car drives past to stop a vehicle, it can take a tremendous weight off of our shoulders.
If police decide to pull a motorist over, and there are signs that the driver may have been drinking, the officer may begin a more thorough investigation into the matter to determine if the individual is driving under the influence
. Many people do not know what they need to do to protect their rights when they are stopped by police.
Under Connecticut law, any person driving on state roadways consents to a blood or breath test if ordered to do so by a law enforcement officer. This means that if the motorist refuses this test, his or her driver's license will be suspended immediately. Additionally, the individual will probably then be arrested for DUI, and the officer will continue with securing the evidence needed to establish impairment.
In some circumstances, the officer may ask the court to issue a warrant to compel a blood test. This can take time, especially if a judge cannot be located. Some officers may try to collect the sample without a warrant, and claim that the circumstances required this collection because the evidence was about to disappear. A recent Supreme Court case has addressed these types of warrantless blood tests, and it might have a major impact on drunk-driving cases throughout the country.
A man was stopped for DUI after an officer noticed some erratic driving. The motorist failed several field sobriety tests, and refused to give a blood or breath sample. The officer, an experienced veteran, took the man to a nearby hospital. The man again refused to consent to a blood test.
The officer then forced the medical personnel to obtain the sample over the man's objections, without first obtaining a warrant. The officer felt that the warrant was not required in this situation, even though he could have obtained one prior to having the blood drawn.
The Court disagreed with the officer's assessment, and refused to create a rule that allowed for warrantless retrievals in all DUI stops. Each case must be examined to learn if the situation called for such a procedure. If the warrant was not obtained, the evidence may potentially be excluded.
If you have been arrested for DUI in Connecticut, it is important to review your case with an experienced criminal defense attorney. An attorney can ensure that you are able to ask any questions that you have, and allow you to understand what you need to do at this time. A conviction for DUI will cause you significant hardships, and you should aggressively defend yourself against these accusations.
Article provided by Kevin Smith, Attorney at Law
Visit us at www.kevinsmithlaw.com