A recent U.S. Supreme Court decision paved the way for an Assembly bill, proposed Monday, that would allow law enforcement to obtain a warrant to draw blood in cases involving first-time operating while intoxicated suspects.
The bill’s sponsor, state Rep. Andre Jacque, R-De Pere, said the change is necessary to make “sure the most accurate information is available in the court process for determining whether or not somebody was intoxicated.”
The bill was spurred by a 5-4 decision released by the nation’s high court in April. The decision in the case of Missouri vs. McNeely found that a blood test without a warrant in a drunken-driving case violates a suspect’s Fourth Amendment rights.
“Previously there was no need to get a warrant for a blood draw,” Jacque said. “This is basically a new problem created by the U.S. Supreme Court decision.”
Jacque said he proposed the legislation after talking to prosecutors and law enforcement in the Green Bay area.
The bill is sponsored by four other Republican representatives in the Assembly. A Senate equivalent has not been proposed, though Jacque said he is “hoping that might still happen.”
“If it doesn’t, we’re just hoping to get it through the Assembly as quick as possible,” he said.