Schulke v. NDDOTAnnotate this Case
The North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) appealed a district court’s judgment reversing an administrative hearing officer’s decision to revoke Carter Schulke’s driving privileges for a period of three years. On May 11, 2019, following a high-speed pursuit, Schulke was stopped by law enforcement, arrested for fleeing, driving under suspension, reckless endangerment, and possession of drug paraphernalia, handcuffed, and placed in a patrol car. While Schulke was seated in the backseat of the patrol car the arresting officer smelled alcohol emanating from Schulke. Because of safety concerns and Schulke’s behavior, the arresting officer did not conduct field sobriety tests or request an alcohol related screening test at the location of the stop. At the correctional center, the arresting officer requested Schulke perform field sobriety tests. Schulke refused to perform the field sobriety tests. Schulke was then read the implied consent warning for the screening test and asked to submit to a screening test pursuant to N.D.C.C. 39-20-14(1). Schulke refused to submit to the screening test. Schulke was then read the implied consent advisory for an Intoxilyzer breath test pursuant to N.D.C.C. 39-20-01. Schulke refused to take the breath test, became extremely uncooperative, and was eventually placed in confinement. Schulke was informed that in addition to the other charges, he was being arrested for “DUI Refusal.” The NDDOT argued the district court erred in reversing the administrative hearing officer’s determination that Schulke refused an alcohol related screening test in violation of N.D.C.C. 39-20-14(1). The North Dakota Supreme Court determined the administrative hearing officer's determination was supported by a preponderance of the evidence. It therefore reversed the district court's judgment and reinstated the administrative hearing officer's decision.