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Warrantless Blood Draws in DUI Cases

The US Supreme Court has taken up the case of Missouri v. McNeely, No. 11-1425.  A Missouri Highway Patrol officer stopped McNeely for speeding.  McNeely appeared to be intoxicated and refused the breathalyzer test.  The officer took him to a hospital for a blood test without consent or a warrant.  The Missouri Supreme Court held that this violated the Fourth Amendment.

The Question Presented, as framed by counsel for Missouri, is "Whether a law enforcement officer may obtain a nonconsensual and warrantless blood sample from a drunk driver under the exigent circumstances exception to the Fourth Amendment warrant requirement based upon the natural dissipation of alcohol in the bloodstream."

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