Does a suspected DUI deny your rights to your own body?
Unfortunately, yes, in Tennessee it does. That’s why an experienced Tennessee DUI attorney is so important if you’ve been charged.
Big changes have occurred in the last few years over who can be required to submit a blood test when accused of DUI. The previous established practice was that no one arrested for a first offense charge was mandated to take a test. Multiple accused offenders, those with children in the car, or drivers involved in accidents were required to submit to a test under threat of force.
What is current law governing blood tests for DUIs?
When the Supreme Court correctly ruled that your body and the blood in it were constitutionally protected, it initially put an end to mandatory blood test even with multiple offenders. The change was short-lived. The statute that mandated testing for multiple offenders now states that there can be a blood or breath test for multiple offenders, drivers involved in an accident, or whenever an officer gets a search warrant. The government seized on this “search warrant” language and expanded its use to all suspected DUI offenders, including first-time offenders. The result is that the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office, Mt. Juliet Police, Lebanon Police, and many other agencies now get a search warrant mandating a blood test for every suspected DUI offender if they do not get consent from the driver.
If you are arrested for DUI, you can assume a search warrant will be obtained to take your blood for testing for blood alcohol level. If the blood alcohol level is below the legal limit of .08, then they will perform mandatory toxicology testing on your blood for drugs or medications, meaning substances that are illegal or legal.
Can a DUI still be defended after blood is drawn?
There are defenses to these blood alcohol results obtained by the government. My experience shows there are more defenses for those who consent to the blood test than those who demand a search warrant before giving their blood. Consent granted under oppressive conditions, without proper warnings, or during times of injury after an accident have options to contest the voluntariness of the consent.
DUI is aggressively prosecuted, and the rules change monthly. Be safe and drive sober but, if circumstances find you arrested for DUI, only hire the professionals to defend your future.
In the defense of the citizen accused,