State v. Lemeunier-FitzgeraldAnnotate this Case
The Supreme Judicial Court affirmed the trial court’s denial of Defendant’s motion to suppress his blood-alcohol test results as having been procured without a warrant and without voluntary consent, holding that Defendant consented to the blood test.
The blood test was taken upon probable cause to believe that the ability of Defendant, the driver of the motor vehicle, to operate the vehicle was impaired by intoxicants. On appeal, Defendant argued that the blood test was unconstitutional because it was taken without a warrant and her consent to the test was rendered involuntary by the warning of an increased minimum sentence if she refused to consent and was then convicted. The Supreme Judicial Court disagreed, holding that no coercion results from a law enforcement officer’s statement to a driver that, if she is ultimately convicted of operating under the influence, her failure to submit to a blood draw would subject her to an enhanced criminal penalty, including a minimum mandatory jail term.