Platte County Prosecutor Eric Zahnd announced today that Platte County will be the first juristiction in the Kansas City Metropolitan area to conduct warrantless blood draws of those stopped and suspected of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). Because Kansas City Missouri City Limits extend into the Northland, the Kansas City Police Department, including the North Patrol Division Station, will be participating with Platte County agencies including the Platte County Sheriff's Department and the Missouri Highway Patrol in enforcing this new policy.
In 2010 the Missouri Legislature made many changes to Missouri DUI laws. One major piece of legislation that was passed now permits Law Enforcement to subject drivers suspected of DUI who refuse the breath alcohol test (Breathalyzer) to a blood test without their consent and without first obtaining a warrant. The reasoning behind this legislation is that because the body metabolizes alcohol so quickly, that by the time a warrant could be obtained, critical evidence could be lost; i.e. the driver's BAC may go down.
Under Missouri Law, a blood draw must be administered by a Nurse or other certified medical technician, the officer is not qualified to do the blood draw.
So if you are stopped and detained for a DUI in Platte County and refuse to take the breathalyzer, you basically no longer have the 'Right to Refuse' , and can expect a visit from a nurse or EMT. Is this legal? Courts in other juristictions have upheld the new law, and it remains to be seen to what extent it will be used in Platte County.
If you have been charged with DWI in Platte County or in any juristiction in the Kansas City Metropolitan Area, contact our office for a consulation or submit a Free Case Evaluation Form on our wesite.