Warrants needed for DWI samples

DWI Arrest

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KIMT NEWS 3 — A U.S. Supreme Court ruling earlier this week could toss out thousands of DWI cases.

They determined that law enforcement must have a search warrant before taking a blood alcohol sample from a DWI suspect.

In Minnesota most arrests are made with a breathalyzer, not with a blood sample.

“You can refuse to take any kind of test, but when it’s offered, we either offer you a breath test, which is the vast majority of cases, or we have to offer you blood or urine and you have a choice between those two,” said Albert Lea Police Chief Dwaine Winkels, “If you refuse to take a test then of course you license is automatically revoked.”

He said it should not make much of a difference to how they do their jobs.

“If this drags in the breath test also it could slow all of them down, but if it’s only talking about involuntary tests, which are extremely rare, it wouldn’t slow them down at all,” Winkels said.

Police in Minnesota may take blood tests without court order if the case involves serious injury or death.

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