Kevin J. Pitts is a a New Smyrna Beach DUI Attorney that frequently handles Daytona Beach DUI cases. Mr. Pitts is a former Daytona Beach DUI prosecutor that has focused his practice exclusively on criminal defense, DUI defense and traffic ticket defense since 2010. Mr. Pitts has obtained the New Smyrna Beach Blood Draw Policies and Procedures through a public records request. If you are accused of a DUI in Daytona Beach, New Smyrna Beach or the surrounding areas contact Mr. Pitts at 386-451-5112 to set up a free case review.
1. A Supreme Court decision (Missouri v. McNeely, 2013 WL 1628934 (U.S. 2013) requires a search warrant in all non-consensual blood draw cases absent unusual and exigent circumstance.
Commentary: The Court recognized that the passage of time naturally results in the dissipation of alcohol in a person’s blood and thus the loss of evidence. The Court also recognized the ability of experts to accurately calculate blood alcohol content at a point in time prior to the actual blood draw. The Court further observed that some delay in obtaining medical assistance for a blood draw was inevitable and that in many states warrant processing, including judicial review, could be accomplished electronically. Ultimately the Court concluded that there was little justification in the typical DUI case to dispense with the warrant requirement.
2. No forced blood draw should occur without a search warrant unless you encounter serious difficulties in your attempts to get a warrant or other circumstances make getting a warrant impractical.
• No warrant is necessary, even in cases involving serious bodily injury or death, if the suspect consents
• The limitations of FS 316.1933 remain in effect. Officers can only compel a blood draw in cases where
• A DUI suspect who refuses to cooperate with testing should be charged and/or processed for the refusal there is probable cause to believe that the suspect was under the influence of alcohol or drugs and was wholly or partially at fault in a traffic crash causing death or serious bodily injury to another person; under the appropriate subsection of FS 316.1932 even when a warrant is obtained and testing ultimately
3. In a serious bodily injury or death case, a blood draw without a warrant based on exigent circumstances should only be done as a last resort. Exigent circumstances might be found in a case where, despite strenuous efforts, no judge is available to approve the warrant or perhaps in a case where it takes hours to extricate the suspect from his vehicle and all evidence of intoxication is in danger of being lost. Detailed documentation of the exigent circumstances is critical.
4. If a driver refuses to provide a blood sample and has been taken to a medical facility, officers should ask medical personnel if blood was drawn resultant of the examination/admitting procedure. If a sample was taken officers may request a subpoena for the blood information and or make application for a search warrant to seize the blood sample. Officers should not request the blood draw as the request may be determined to circumvent the warrant requirement.
5. When appropriate, the facts and circumstance of a Judge’s refusal to issue a search warrant shall be properly documented in the officer’s report.
6. The blood test must be administered by a physician, certified paramedic, registered nurse, licensed practical nurse, or other personnel authorized by a hospital to draw blood, or duly licensed clinical laboratory technician acting at the request of a law enforcement officer. The blood will be drawn in the presence of the officer using a department issued kit. Directions for use are included with the kit. The officer shall complete a property report and request the person drawing the blood sign it over to the officer as evidence. The blood will be submitted into Evidence.
7. If criminal charges will not be filed until the results of the blood test are returned, the officer shall complete the crash report and state in the narrative sections that the issuance of a citation is pending the receipt of the blood test. When the test results are received, the officer will complete a supplemental report and will issue a citation or make an arrest as appropriate.