CHP No Longer Doing Forced Blood Draws

The California Highway Patrol is suspending non-consensual blood draws in misdemeanor DUI / Drunk Driving cases and will obtain search warrants for blood draws in Felony DUI / Drunk Driving cases unless there are exigent circumstances beyond the mere dissipation of the suspect's blood alcohol content . The new policy is a direct result of the US Supreme Court decision I posted about last week. Credit should be given to the CHP for following the 4th amendment of the US Constitution as reaffirmed by the US Supreme Court. So many of our clients were shocked to learn police actually threaten to restrain as well as restrain them when they withdrew their consent to a chemical test (breath/blood).

Forced Blood Draws Require A Warrant

The US Supreme Court ruled that police officers are generally required to get a warrant when they can reasonably do so before they can draw blood when a DUI / Drunk Driver refuses to provide a breath or blood sample. People have a protected privacy interest in preventing a government agent from piercing their skin. Up until now in California, when people refuse to give a breath/blood sample, the police were threatening to physically restrain or physically restraining people and drawing their blood. In an 8-1 decision, the Supreme Court affirmed the 4th Amendment of the Constitution protects motorists from a warrantless intrusion into the the skin of people. Getting a warrant can easily be done over the phone or by fax in a relatively quick manner. It remains to be seen if police will actually take the time to get a warrant.

Facebook,Twitter Changing DUI / Drunk Driving Checkpoints

Apr 15, 2013 — by Myles L. Berman | Comments (0)
Tags: Dui Checkpoints Law Enforcement Agency Topgundui Website

As a result of DUI checkpoints being posted in advance on Facebook and Twitter, police agencies are starting to rethink their use of DUI checkpoints to catch suspected drunk drivers. Instead of focusing on weekend nights, police are starting to set up checkpoints during the week and at unusual locations. For example, a police agency in Northern California wine country set up a DUI checkpoint at the bottom of a winery's driveway on barrel-tasting day! This change in policy will have serious negative consequences on business that have specific types of promotions that involve alcohol. Police will also no longer need the large number of officers needed for busy roadway DUI checkpoints nor will it take them as long to set up the checkpoints. If arrested for DUI, call 888-4-TOPGUN (888-486-7486) for representation. Drive safely.

DUI Checkpoint Tonight In Los Angeles

Apr 6, 2013 — by Myles L. Berman | Comments (0)
Tags: Dui Checkpoints

Tonight, Saturday, 4/6/13, the Los Angeles Police Department will be conducting a DUI / Drunk Driving checkpoint from 8pm to 2am at Roscoe Blvd. and Gloria Ave. On Fridays, unless I am out of town, I post known DUI checkpoints for the upcoming weekend. I have been doing this for years. Starting this week, I will also post known DUI checkpoints here as well. Be safe and drive carefully. If arrested for DUI, call 888-4-TOPGUN right away.

Update on Massachusetts Crime Lab Problems

Apr 5, 2013 — by Myles L. Berman | Comments (0)
Tags: State Crime Labs Law Enforcement Agency Blood Draw Testing

As you may recall, I've been writing for quite some time about a former Massachusetts chemist who is accused of faking test results and tampering with evidence. Now the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts is asking the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court to put on hold the sentences of defendants where the chemist was involved while motions for new trials are pending. This is yet another example of how defense lawyers are at the forefront of preserving our liberties in courts throughout the country so that we can continue to be a free society. No one should be convicted of a crime based on dishonest evidence. This is especially true in DUI / Drunk Driving cases as chemists play a key role in prosecuting these types of cases.