The United States Supreme decided this past week to hear cases stemming out of North Dakota and Minnesota concerning the constitutionality of criminalizing the refusal of breathalyzer tests. The legal issue in question concerns law enforcement’s potential infringement of the Fourth Amendment right to unreasonable search and seizure under the United States Constitution when police criminalize a suspect for refusing the breath test during a DUI stop. The Supreme Court has ruled in general that the police cannot search a driver or vehicle upon arrest without a warrant unless it is for their own personal safety or to preserve evidence. Challengers to this law look to the Supreme Court’s 2013 decision holding that police could not conduct blood tests without a warrant.
Recently, a Floridian woman was live streaming herself driving intoxicated. She says at one point “I’m so drunk” and “let me see if I can make it home without a ticket” on the live stream Periscope App on which other individuals can comment. While on this application, an officer logged on to it and located her car. She then failed the field sobriety test. She was ultimately arrested and given $500 bail.