Nevada high court strikes DWI implied consent law

by William Helbling
[JURIST] The Nevada Supreme Court [official website] on Thursday ruled [opinion, PDF] that Nevada’s implied consent law [text], which allows police officers to take blood samples of motorists to determine impairment, is unconstitutional. The case involved a man named Michael Byars who was stopped by state troopers for driving under the influence of a controlled substance. Upon questioning the suspect the officers detected the smell of marijuana and arrested Byars, who was later subject to blood testing allowed by Nevada’s implied consent law. The Nevada Supreme court ruled that the implied consent rule as used within the case was unconstitutional because the warrantless search violated the Fourth Amendment [text]. However, the evidence found through the blood testing was not suppressed by use of the exclusionary rule because the court found the officers acted in good faith.
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