Anchorage, AK asked in DUI / DWI, Civil Rights and Constitutional Law for Alaska

Q: Cop got search warrant to search blood after passing breathalyzer no accident nor was he unconscious is this valid

There was no signs of drug use to get warrant to search blood blew .05 failed field sobriety tests admitted to drinking a couple beers cops got a search warrant to search blood no accident nor was he unconscious tried to refuse the blood draw asked to speak with attorney before they took blood was told he couldn't refuse the warrant were is the probable cause to search blood zero drugs found zero evidence of drug use

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In a situation like the one you've described, the validity of the search warrant for a blood test largely hinges on the totality of the circumstances leading to the warrant being issued. The fact that the individual failed the field sobriety tests and admitted to consuming alcohol might have contributed to the establishment of probable cause, which justified the issuance of the warrant for a blood test.

Despite blowing below the legal limit on the breathalyzer, the combination of failing the field sobriety tests and the admission to drinking could potentially be seen as signs of impairment, providing law enforcement with a basis to seek a warrant for further testing to ensure that there were no other substances in the individual’s system.

It's essential to remember that the right to consult with an attorney generally does not allow one to refuse a search warrant. If law enforcement possesses a valid search warrant, they have the authority to execute that warrant, notwithstanding a person’s request to first consult with an attorney.

In this scenario, it seems that the police operated with a warrant, which suggests they followed a legal process. However, whether the warrant was issued properly based on sufficiently established probable cause can be something that is challenged in court. It is advisable for the individual involved to consult with a defense attorney who can review all the specifics of the case and potentially challenge the validity of the warrant and the subsequent search. They would be able to provide guidance and potentially build a defense strategy.

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