US Supreme Court
5:59 pm
Tue September 25, 2012

US Supreme Court To Take On Missouri Drunk Driving Case

Jacob McCleland of KRCU's reporting used in this story.

The US Supreme Court will pick up a case that could determine whether police can legally administer blood tests without a warrant.

A Missouri State Highway Patrol officer took Tyler McNeely to a Cape Girardeau hospital for blood tests after he failed field sobriety tests but refused the breathalyzer.

The American Civil Liberties Union represents McNeely. Legal director Tony Rothert says the warrantless blood test goes against the Fourth Amendment’s protection against unreasonable search and seizure.

“So there’s no warrant required for field sobriety tests or just to ask questions and that was done in this case without a warrant," Rothert said. "Most Americans believe that, walking down the street, the police officer can ask you questions but they can’t stick a needle in you and take blood from you.”

The Missouri Supreme Court has already ruled in McNeely’s favor. Rothert says the US high court will tackle the case because several states have ruled differently on the issue.

Rothert anticipates oral arguments in January of next year.

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