Byars v. StateAnnotate this Case
Defendant was stopped for speeding and admitted to having smoked marijuana five hours before the stop. Law enforcement officers informed Defendant that they would perform a blood draw, during which Defendant struggled by striking two officers. The blood draw showed that Defendant had THC in his blood. Defendant was charged with unlawful use or being under the influence of a controlled substance, among other offenses. Defendant was convicted of all counts. On appeal, Defendant argued, among other things, that the warrantless blood draw violated the Fourth Amendment. The Supreme Court held (1) the natural dissipation of marijuana in the blood stream does not constitute a per se exigent circumstance justifying a warrantless search; (2) Nev. Rev. Stat. 484C.160(7), which permits officers to use force to obtain a blood sample from a person, is unconstitutional, and the blood draw in this case was unlawful because Defendant did not submit to it; but (3) because the blood draw was taken in good faith, the exclusionary rule did not apply, and the Fourth Amendment violation therefore did not warrant reversal of the judgment of conviction.