Pennsylvania drivers who are ever stopped by a police officer and questioned for suspected drunk driving should know that the law provides specific rights to them in this process. Regardless of whether or not a person is guilty of some action that breaks a law, they have the right to be treated fairly and members of law enforcement are required to follow certain protocol. When this does not happen, there may be ramifications that change the direction of a criminal case.
An example of this can be seen in the case of one man in Monroe County. The driver was reportedly in an accident and the officers involved believed he may have been intoxicated and therefore asked him to agree to have his blood drawn to measure his blood alcohol content. The defendant did agree to the blood test. However, his agreement to take the test was based on his belief that he would be able to participate in the state’s Accelerated Rehabilitation Disposition program. Additionally, the driver was not informed of the potential consequences he may face if he chose not to have his blood drawn.
The driver later discovered he was not able to joining the ARD program and he is now awaiting a trial date. Due to the circumstances of his blood test including the lack of full consent on the part of the officers, the results of the test will not be able to be used in his case.
Defendants who are charged with drunk driving offenses may find working with an attorney a useful way of learning how they may protect their rights in the defense process.
Source: Pocono Record, “Monroe ruling could affect DUI cases,” Andrew Scott, November 27, 2017