Olevik v. GeorgiaAnnotate this Case
This case calls for the Georgia Supreme Court to decide whether Georgia’s state constitutional protection prohibited law enforcement from compelling a person suspected of DUI to blow their deep lung air into a breathalyzer. “A nearly unbroken line of precedent dating back to 1879 leads us to conclude that it does, although the appellant here still loses because the language of the implied consent notice statute he challenges is not per se coercive.” Frederick Olevik was convicted of DUI less safe, failure to maintain a lane, and no brake lights. Olevik appealed, challenging the denial of his motion to suppress the results of a state-administered breath test on the grounds that the implied consent notice statute, OCGA 40-5-67.1 (b), was unconstitutional on its face and as applied to him. Olevik argued: (1) that his right against compelled self-incrimination was implicated when law enforcement asked him to expel deep lung air into a breathalyzer; (2) that the materially misleading language of the implied consent notice was coercive per se and in fact did compel him to perform this act; thus (3) the admission of his breath test results violated his right against compelled self-incrimination under the Georgia Constitution and his due process rights. The Supreme Court agreed with Olevik that submitting to a breath test implicates a person’s right against compelled self-incrimination under the Georgia Constitution, and it overruled prior decisions that held otherwise. The Court nevertheless rejected Olevik’s facial challenges to the implied consent notice statute, because the language of that notice was not per se coercive.