The rules governing drawing and testing blood as part of a DUI offense favors the state. This is usually the case as the policy rational leans heavily toward public safety and the administration of the law. Chapter 11 of the Mississippi statute sets out the rules governing blood testing for the purposes of investigating DUI offenses. The statute begins by outlining the ever important “implied consent” law, which authorizes motor vehicles to submit to blood draws. Other statutes go into detail about instances where blood tests are authorized as well as the consequences of refusal. The blood test rules in Mississippi mirror the rules in many other states in the country. With implied consent as the major principle, law enforcement have a shield of protection should there be an argument for unlawful search.
Implied consent occurs when circumstances arise that would lead a reasonable person to believe that consent had been given even though the consent is not direct, express, or explicit. The form of implied consent at issue in Mitchell is one that exists in most states. The law permits law enforcement to test motorists for DUI should they enter the jurisdiction. Mississippi has an implied consent law under which it administers chemical tests of DUI suspects. Under Section 63-11-5 of the Mississippi state statue, any person who operates a motor vehicle upon the public highways, public roads and in the streets of Mississippi is deemed to have given his or her consent to a chemical test or tests of his breath for the purpose of determining alcohol concentration.
Accident Victims and Court Admissibility
Section 63-11-7 outlines an instance where a blood test is explicitly mandated. According to 63-11-7, any person who is unconscious as a result of an accident will be subjected to a blood test for the purpose of determining the alcoholic content in his or her blood at the time of the accident. The winkle in this blood test requirement relates to its admissibility in court. According to this Section, the results from the blood test is not admissible in court as evidence against the person without the consent of the person tested. At the same time, if the person refuses to release the evidence, he or she will receive a suspended driver's license for 90 days.
Administration of the Blood Test
Proper administration of the blood test under Section 63-11-7 is outlined in Section 63-11-9. According to that Section, blood tests drawn after an accident must be drawn by a person acting at the request of a law enforcement officer. The purpose of the blood draw is also limited. The test is used for the sole purpose of determining the alcoholic content in the blood and for no other purpose. For example, a blood sample cannot be run in a database to determine whether it matches blood samples from other crime-related investigations. That further inquiry can only be conducted with a court order. However, this limitation does not apply to breath and urine specimens.
Let Us Help With Your DUI Case
Attorney James Robert Ferguson is a seasoned DUI attorney with experience working with the Mississippi implied consent law including the rules governing blood tests during DUI investigations. If you have been charged with a DUI or you believe you had a blood test taken improperly, contact us now. We will provide a unique approach to help you with your matter.