Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Officer's Observations Justify Implied Consent

State v. Welshhons, No. 06-1040 (Iowa Ct. App. Jan. 18, 2007)

Welshhons was driving a pickup when he center punched an SUV on Douglas Avenue in the Highland Park are of Des Moines, killing a two year old passenger. Officers observed a beer bottle in Welshhons' truck and detected an odor of adult beverage. An hour and twenty minutes later officers arrived at the hospital where Welshhons had been taken for his injuries which were significant. The officer concluded he was in no condition to conduct a full on drug recognition exam.

At 11:58 pm a PBT was administered. Based on the results the implied consent procedure was instituted and a urine sample from the catheter bag proved positive for alcohol, amphetamines and marijuana.

Welshhons moved to suppress the evidence, argung that the implied consent procedures were improperly invoked because the officer had no reasonable grounds to believe he was operating under the influence.

The Court of Appeals differed, stating that when the preliminary results of the PBT show the presence of alcohol a prudent person would be warranted in requesting a more accurate test.


Post a Comment

<< Home