FREE e-Newsletter
Important News - Hot Topics
Get them Now!

Dynamic Plaques - FVT Plaques
FVT Plaques is introducing new dynamic plaques to recognize police and sheriff's...

Legally Defensible Training Records

Ask The Expert

Ari Vidali

CEO and Founder of Envisage Technologies

Top News

Supreme Court Requires Warrant for DUI Blood Tests

April 17, 2013  | 

Photo via Lori Greig/Flickr.
Photo via Lori Greig/Flickr.

The United States Supreme Court required officers to obtain a warrant before drawing blood from a suspected drunk driver in a decision announced Wednesday.

The court ruled 5-4 in Missouri v. McNeely that a warantless blood draw would violate the Fourth Amendment unless the officer needed to prevent destruction or loss of evidence.

The court released four opinions on the case, including one from Justice Sonia Sotomayor in which she wrote that "Our ruling will not severely hamper law enforcement."

Comments (4)

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Cam @ 4/18/2013 2:31 AM

I happen to be a disabled, retired police officer who does not believe what I just read. Just exactly how does Sotomayor know what will and will not 'hamper law enforcement'. After being forced to retire, I have tried to follow DUI's, and changes made to the laws already on the books. I was t-boned in my patrol car in 2003. Since 2003, I have seen even more tolerance by the public for these victimless crimes. Law enforcement have to beg lawmakers in my state just for a primary seat belt law. Regardless here in my state, whether it is your 5th felony DUI, or your 35th felony, the penalties are the same. Alcohol is a LEGAL drug, and look what happens to accidents involving alcohol. Now states are adding marijuana as another legal drug. Prescription meds for; sleep, pain, nerve pain, or anything else does not say 'do not drive while taking this medicine' on the label. It only says not to drive or operate heavy machinery or drive until you know how this medication affects you. In this day and age, there should be no such thing as any tolerance for the so-called 'disease' of those who drink and drive. If we cannot get the Supreme Court to understand this...well I have no idea except they need to go on some ride alongs with LEO's that they are 'not hampering' us to do our jobs. Have night court, watch an autopsy, tell a family member they just lost someone they loved to a DUI driver. There are answers out there, but who has the personal agenda of DUI's, otherwise it will go unchanged again, and again. The Supreme Court is making a mockery of itself, as any LEO can tell you when a person has had a prior DUI. The suspected driver, who allegedly hit some one, know the drill. NO COOPERATION with field sobriety tests (fst's) or blowing in a breathalyzer, will not happen if they know the system. Talk about tying the hands of law enforcement, again.

Mark @ 4/18/2013 7:42 PM

This is a bad article. This is NOT what the court ruled. See

Ima Leprechaun @ 4/18/2013 10:05 PM

I wonder how that will work with the implied consent rule.

DaveSAM5525G @ 4/19/2013 2:51 AM

My theory only - as the water has yet to be tested and tried and I could be off...The ruling was over whether law enforcement can withdraw blood from someone suspected of a DUI without their consent and without a search warrant. The court decided that violated a person's Fourth Amendment rights. In many states, law enforcement agencies that draw blood without consent could, up until Wednesday's ruling, draw it under two different laws - implied consent and exigent circumstances. “I think they are going to need a look at developing some procedures, which we work with agencies and judges and our prosecutors to see if we can expedite the process of getting a warrant.” But there's something else at play in many states that are an implied consent state, meaning if you drive on the highways of the state, you have given consent to submit to either breath, blood or urine tests when suspected of DUI. So, county prosecutors and law enforcement agencies have to figure out which way to lean on this now! The Supreme Court's ruling mainly deals with a more routine type DUIs. In the case of aggravated DUI with injuries and vehicular manslaughter, officers can perform a blood draw without a warrant or permission?

Join the Discussion

POLICE Magazine does not tolerate comments that include profanity, personal attacks or antisocial behavior (such as "spamming" or "trolling"). This and other inappropriate content or material will be removed. We reserve the right to block any user who violates this, including removing all content posted by that user.

Other Recent News

FLEOA Endorses Law Enforcement Retirement Bill for All Uniformed Officers
Today, the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA) issued a statement of...
Former “Lost Boy of Sudan” Becomes Atlanta Officer
Jacob Mach, and his son, were all smiles for his first day at the Atlanta Police...
New Chief Takes Command of Pittsburgh PD
Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto today swore in Scott Schubert to a permanent police chief...
3 Officers Injured in Tucson Immigration Protest
A protest in downtown Tucson against President Trump’s immigration law enforcement...
Video: Gunman Opens Fire on Oakland Officers, Residents with Rifle
Oakland, CA, police have arrested a man they say triggered a tense standoff with police...

Get Your FREE Trial Issue and Win a Gift! Subscribe Today!
Yes! Please rush me my FREE TRIAL ISSUE of POLICE magazine and FREE Officer Survival Guide with tips and tactics to help me safely get out of 10 different situations.

Just fill in the form to the right and click the button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.

If POLICE does not satisfy you, just write "cancel" on the invoice and send it back. You'll pay nothing, and the FREE issue is yours to keep. If you enjoy POLICE, pay only $25 for a full one-year subscription (12 issues in all). Enjoy a savings of nearly 60% off the cover price!

Offer valid in US only. Outside U.S., click here.
It's easy! Just fill in the form below and click the red button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.
First Name:
Last Name:
Zip Code:
We respect your privacy. Please let us know if the address provided is your home, as your RANK / AGENCY will not be included on the mailing label.
E-mail Address:

Police Magazine