DUI Suspects Taken to the Hospital
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_single_image image=”6022″ img_size=”642×240″][vc_column_text]Many people see DUI suspects as criminals but fail to acknowledge the fact that they are humans first. This means that even if an individual suspected of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol gets into a motor vehicle collision, they have the right to receive medical treatment. More so, they have the right to consent or deny a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test.
Most police officers will conclude that it is unreasonable to issue a breathalyzer test or draw a urine sample when an individual has suffered severe car accident injuries. Instead, they’ll suggest drawing a blood sample to gauge your BAC.
If you or someone you know was arrested for a DUI then taken to the hospital, reach out to an Orlando DUI defense lawyer at The Umansky Law Firm. Time is of the essence in DUI cases as your BAC levels decline the longer you go without an alcoholic beverage. Law enforcement is aware of this and will often go outside the confinements of the law to get evidence of a DUI. Our team is here to see to it that they are held accountable for their actions.
Voluntary Consent for Blood Test After DUI
Law enforcement officers are obligated to follow you to the hospital if they suspect you of driving under the influence. Their goal upon arriving at the hospital is to get your free and voluntary consent for them to obtain a blood sample to help determine your BAC level or the presence of any controlled substance.
If they gain consent, they must document how it was requested onto their consent form and via recorded audio. This is done to provide transparency with police officer operations and ensure that DUI suspects aren’t ordered or persuaded to consent to a blood draw.
In situations where there was an accident, law enforcement must inform the DUI suspect that they have completed the accident investigation (after test results confirm inebriation) and are beginning a criminal investigation for driving under the influence. This allows suspects to understand their rights before consulting with officers.
Denied Consent for Blood Test After DUI
As a DUI suspect, you have the freedom to deny consent for a blood draw. However, such actions may carry their own set of penalties. If the arresting officers would like to perform a forced blood draw, they will have to secure a warrant, but one will only be issued if the case is a:
- Felony DUI; or
- DUI manslaughter; or
- DUI with serious bodily injury.
In 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Missouri v. McNeely that the cop must obtain a search warrant before taking blood unless there is voluntary consent or unless there is an “exigent circumstance.”
Under Florida Statute 316.1933(1)(a) police shall require a driver to submit to a blood test, by reasonable force if necessary, if the officer has probable cause to believe that a motor vehicle driven by or in the actual physical control of a person under the influence of alcohol has caused the death or serious bodily injury of another human being. Both of these circumstances would be considered felony DUI.
Our role as your criminal defense team is to crosscheck law enforcement’s procedures to determine whether or not they conducted their investigation “by the book.” The primary area of contention in most DUI cases like this is whether or not officers had free and voluntary consent to draw blood for testing. While many will use Florida’s “Implied Consent” Statute to justify their actions, it has its restrictions and therefore, isn’t always applicable.
Knowledgeable Orlando DUI Defense Lawyers
The Orlando DUI defense lawyers at The Umansky Law Firm have experience handling a diverse range of DUI cases and using law enforcement’s missteps to the benefit of the accused. Regardless of if you’re charged with refusing a blood test or your blood was taken against your will, we can meet with you and inform you of the best way to refute the charges.
Allow us to put our over 100 years of combined experience to work for you. Contact us today at 407-228-3838 for a free case evaluation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]