Today, the US Supreme Court placed new limits on state laws that make it a crime for motorists suspected of drunken driving to refuse alcohol tests.
The justices ruled that police must obtain a search warrant before requiring drivers to take blood alcohol tests, but not breath tests, which the court considers less intrusive.
Drivers in all 50 states can have their licenses revoked for refusing drunken driving tests. The court’s ruling affects laws in eleven states (including Florida) that impose additional criminal penalties for such refusals.
Writing for five justices in the majority, Justice Samuel Alito said breath tests do not implicate “significant privacy concerns.” Unlike blood tests, Alito said breathing into a breathalyzer doesn’t pierce the skin or leave a biological sample in the government’s possession.
How this will affect Florida’s law on a Second Refusal and may adversely affect Florida’s law on forced blood draws for manslaughter and serious bodily injuries.
If you have been arrested for a DUI, DUI Serious Bodily Injury, or DUI Manslaughter call and Get Lawyered Up with Tampa Attorney Martin Hernandez at 813-229-5353 for a consultation today.