Home / BREAKING NEWS / BOMBSHELL: State Supreme Court Just Ruled Mandatory DUI Tests are Unconstitutional

BOMBSHELL: State Supreme Court Just Ruled Mandatory DUI Tests are Unconstitutional

dui-test--unconstitutional

On Friday, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled the state’s DUI testing refusal law unconstitutional, setting a remarkable precedent concerning forced testing of those suspected of driving under the influence.

In a 6-1 ruling, the court decided the state’s law, which had made it a crime to refuse breathalyzer or blood alcohol tests without a court-ordered warrant, is excessive punishment. Those tests, the court found, amounted to searches, and the Kansas law “punishes people for exercising their constitutional right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures,” reported the Kansas City Star.

“In essence, the state’s reasons are not good enough, and its law not precise enough, to encroach on the fundamental liberty interest in avoiding an unreasonable search,” wrote Justice Marla Luckert for the majority, according to KCTV.

According to Kansas law, the act of operating a motor vehicle gives implied consent for breath, blood, or urine testing to prove one’s sobriety, but the Supreme Court ruled the state’s Constitution allows for the withdrawal of consent without punishment for doing so.

Previously, refusing a sobriety test qualified as a misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine of no less than $1,250.

“Once a suspect withdraws consent, whether it be express consent or implied (under the statute), a search based on that consent cannot proceed,” the court decided.

According to the court, the state’s “compelling interest” to combat impaired driving and prosecute cases of DUI does not trump people’s fundamental individual liberties as protected by the Constitution.

Justice Caleb Stegall wrote the lone dissenting opinion, saying there are certain situations where the law could adhere to constitutionality, and as such, it should be applied on a case by case basis.

“By making this case about consent,” Stegall wrote, “the majority effectively looks at this appeal through the wrong end of the telescope and ends up with a myopic interpretation (of the statute).”

There are similar laws from other states currently before the U.S. Supreme Court, and Kansas’ could potentially wind up under the high court’s consideration as well.

In a related ruling, the Kansas Supreme Court also decided the case of an individual who consented to testing after being told he would be criminally prosecuted for refusing. According to the court, such a ‘warning’ is considered “coercive,” thus any consent given in such circumstances would be involuntary.

“Jay Norton, an Olathe criminal defense lawyer and expert on DUI law, said the law has often been used ‘as a hammer’ to induce people to plead guilty to DUI to avoid being charged with the additional crime of refusing a test,” reported the Star. Norton also said the law represented “prosecutorial overreach at its zenith.”

Christopher Mann, who sits on the national board of directors for Mothers Against Drunk Driving and is a former member of the Lawrence Police Department, said the organization didn’t agree with the court’s ruling.

“We support penalties for refusing to take chemical tests,” Mann explained. “We think law enforcement members need to have all the tools at their disposal to keep our roads safe from drunken drivers who kill about 10,000 people a year.”

“The Supreme Court has affirmed the right of the individual citizen to be free from forced searches by the government,” Norton stated.

Friday, Norton enthused, was a “great day” for both the Kansas and U.S. Constitutions.

  • john smith

    if when you get your licence you sign the contract saying you agree to dui or suffer the consequences then your SOL ..learn how to use ellipsis … when signing contracts like this so you may retain your rights

    • Morgan O’Brien-Bledsoe Political

      The supreme Court has decided you cannot sign away your right like that. We are not given an opportunity to NOT sign that part and it takes away our 4th and 5th amendment rights. We have the right to privacy in our possessions, which a car is, AND our person. We also have the right to NOT INCRIMINATE ourselves. This law takes away our right to keep our privacy and forces us to give up our right to not incriminate ourselves. It’s 100% unconstitutional.

      • john smith

        can you point out the part the nullifies contracts please?

        • Mark Stewart

          They did point it out! It is the Constitution and it states you do not have to self incriminate and you do not have to be coerced into doing so. The contract still stands just the burden of proof is on the law not the person being accused. Remember “Until Proven Guilty”

          • john smith

            but the burden of proof is your signature on the contract saying you will not drink and drive so that not to much of a burden

          • Giffy

            The liscence contract is void from the beginning because it is a adhesion contract that does not state the rights you will be waiving when signing

          • john smith

            i love you
            thanks for the information

          • john smith

            from what i read even if it did state the rights up front that there are no alternatives to get a licence so they are a monopoly and the contract is basicly void

          • Giffy

            In Nj the license contract doesnt mention that… they wont even admit that it is a contract

      • Mark El Damage

        Preface your signature with “Without prejudice” Everyone needs to study law.

    • Mark El Damage

      Without prejudice is another option, correct? Can you explain the ellipsis. I would like to know more.

  • Cole Hickey

  • But they made filming cops illegal so they still can get away with anything they want to.

  • They aren’t mandatory on Arkansas. We are free to refuse BUT in doing so we forfeit our drivers license.

    • You aren’t free if the state can enact practical consequences without due process.

    • It’s ok. I rather we keep drunk asshole from operating 2 ton weapons.

  • Glad they’re repealing a law that actually does something good for citizens

  • times have changed

  • shalom driving is a right U.S. Code › Title 18 › Part I › Chapter 63 › § 1341
    18 U.S. Code § 1341 – Frauds and swindles

    Whoever, having devised or intending to devise any scheme or artifice to defraud, or for obtaining money or property by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises, or to sell, dispose of, loan, exchange, alter, give away, distribute, supply, or furnish or procure for unlawful use any counterfeit or spurious coin, obligation, security, or other article, or anything represented to be or intimated or held out to be such counterfeit or spurious article, for the purpose of executing such scheme or artifice or attempting so to do, places in any post office or authorized depository for mail matter, any matter or thing whatever to be sent or delivered by the Postal Service, or deposits or causes to be deposited any matter or thing whatever to be sent or delivered by any private or commercial interstate carrier, or takes or receives therefrom, any such matter or thing, or knowingly causes to be delivered by mail or such carrier according to the direction thereon, or at the place at which it is directed to be delivered by the person to whom it is addressed, any such matter or thing, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both. If the violation occurs in relation to, or involving any benefit authorized, transported, transmitted, transferred, disbursed, or paid in connection with, a presidentially declared major disaster or emergency (as those terms are defined in section 102 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5122)), or affects a financial institution, such person shall be fined not more than $1,000,000 or imprisoned not more than 30 years, or both.

  • Let’s protect drunk drivers??? Fuck that

    • Actually it prevents sober drivers from unlawful search. Nowhere does it say field sobriety testing is off the table. Drunk drivers do not deserve a pass but neither do constitutional rights of law abiding citizens.

    • If they are sober then they have no problem with an unlawful search

    • Statistics have shown the DUI checkpoints are a complete failure. They are mainly used to generate revenue for the city and state

    • Heather Wright-Schweitzer- UNLAWFUL search. There’s your problem.

    • Heather Wright-Schweitzer
      If they are sober then they have no problem with an unlawful search
      LikeMore · 50 minutes ago

      Take both of the two brain cells you’ve been rubbing together and try reallllly hard to understand this :

      DUI checkpoints are unconstitutional.

    • Oh my my Heath Ogle…. have to resort to running people down to get your point across?

      Wee man syndrome…. Lil, insecure men who need big trucks, the right to bare arms and must run others down to feel better about themselves.

  • Even a blind chicken gets a kernel once in a while.

  • Here In Tennessee they’ll strap you down “GITMO Style and forcibly remove your blood. Go Figure….

  • This page has gone full retard.

  • The general misconception is that any statute passed by legislators bearing the appearance of law constitutes the law of the land. The U.S. Constitution is the supreme law of the land, and any statute, to be valid, must be in agreement. It is impossible for both the Constitution and a law violating it to be valid; one must prevail. This is succinctly stated as follows:
    The general rule is that an unconstitutional statute, though having the form and name of law, is in reality no law, but is wholly void, and ineffective for any purpose; since unconstitutionality dates from the time of its enactment, and not merely from the date of the decision so branding it. An unconstitutional law, in legal contemplation, is as inoperative as if it had never been passed. Such a statute leaves the question that it purports to settle just as it would be had the statute not been enacted.
    Since an unconstitutional law is void, the general principles follow that it imposes no duties, confers no rights, creates no office, bestows no power or authority on anyone, affords no protection, and justifies no acts performed under it. . .
    A void act cannot be legally consistent with a valid one. An unconstitutional law cannot operate to supersede any existing valid law. Indeed, insofar as a statute runs counter to the fundamental law of the land, it is superseded thereby.
    No one is bound to obey an unconstitutional law and no courts are bound to enforce it.
    Sixteenth American Jurisprudence
    Second Edition, 1998 version, Section 203 (formerly Section 256)
    2. Existence of inherent lack of bona fide jurisd

    • Well put

    • I’ve always felt, that if there were no victims, there could be no crime. Hold people accountable for crime, not what they could, or might do, but what they actually do.

    • Well pasted.

  • That’s all right, they can still tase you, or tie you up and kick you in the head.

  • The Constitution For the United States
    (For the many judges and attorneys who have not read it, ignore it, or deliberately violate it! Hence, committing treason against the United States)
    “This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States [and Treaties] which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; . . . . shall be the supreme Law of the Land. +++
    When the state in the instant case is one of the perpetrators and violators, there can be no expectation of just, indeed any, relief from it. The State cannot cause a federal violation, and then try to prohibit litigants from seeking redress in the federal courts for those same violations (i.e. the state cannot violate our fundamental rights, and then try to have us dismissed out of federal court for seeking vindication of those rights) ‘ “We have long recognized that a state cannot create a transitory cause of action and at the same time destroy the fight to sue on that transitory cause of action in any court having jurisdiction”, Tennessee Coal, Iron & R, Co. v. George, 233 U.S. 354, 360 (1914)’ cited in Marshall v. Marshall (2006).Judges’ oath of office includes the undertaking to uphold the laws and Constitution of the United States. Any Judge violating such undertakings loses jurisdiction, resulting in his orders being VOID, and he himself commits a treasonable offense against the United States.

  • The fact of the matter is , unless someone exhibits drunken behavior , which even then , it’s a matter of personal opinion on wether someone acts drunk , the cops personal.opinion , should be at the he very most , infringed on us to take a legitimate , eye with flashlight sobriety test , non – evasive and accurately tells if someone is impaired to drive , between that ,and a regular breathylzer is more than acceptable methods, but yea ID like too see other States hop on this , any inch of freedom we can get ,personally id cherish …..if there’s more drunk drivers driving because of this ?? So what , life isn’t suppose to some foam basket we lay in 24/7 , there’s gonna be risk , in the 60s-70s there was risk , people that drove knew the risks , there’s always gonna be , yes it should be unlawful to be flat out drunk and driving , that’s obvious , but if states adopt the non mandatory DUI checks , least we know , yes little more risk , but also more freedom , and I would choose freedom over risk any day

  • The founding fathers would be running away in embarrassment at the BS that gets passed or doesn’t get passed on America . Sublime to the ridiculous

  • “Just” ruled? As if they were before?

  • Well DUH

    Who ever thought it was legal to stop and harass everyone traveling down a certain road in hopes they MIGHT catch someone driving under the influence ?

    It’s just an easy way for them to hand out a shitload of tickets and get some overtime pay under the guise of keeping people safe.

  • Monday, September 16, 2013
    U.S. Supreme Court says No License Necessary To Drive Automobile On Public Highways/Streets No License Is Necessary
    U.S. Supreme Court says No License Necessary
    To Drive Automobile On Public Highways/Streets
    No License Is Necessary Copy and Share Freely YHVH.name
    1
    1
    U.S. SUPREME COURT AND OTHER HIGH COURT CITATIONS PROVING THAT
    NO LICENSE IS NECESSARY FOR NORMAL USE OF AN AUTOMOBILE ON COMMON WAYS
    “The right of a citizen to travel upon the public highways and to transport his property thereon, by horsedrawn
    carriage, wagon, or automobile, is not a mere privilege which may be permitted or prohibited at
    will, but a common right which he has under his right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Under
    this constitutional guaranty one may, therefore, under normal conditions, travel at his inclination along the
    public highways or in public places, and while conducting himself in an orderly and decent manner, neither
    interfering with nor disturbing another’s rights, he will be protected, not only in his person, but in his safe
    conduct.” Thompson v.Smith, 154 SE 579, 11 American Jurisprudence, Constitutional Law, section 329, page 1135
    “The right of the Citizen to travel upon the public highways and to transport his property thereon,
    in the ordinary course of life and business, is a common right which he has under the right to enjoy
    life and liberty, to acquire and possess property, and to pursue happiness and safety. It includes the
    right, in so doing, to use the ordinary and usual conveyances of the day, and under the existing
    modes of travel, includes the right to drive a horse drawn carriage or wagon thereon or to operate
    an automobile thereon, for the usual and ordinary purpose of life and business.” -Thompson vs. Smith, supra.;
    Teche Lines vs. Danforth, Miss., 12 S.2d 784
    “… the right of the citizen to drive on a public street with freedom from police interference… is a
    fundamental constitutional right” -White, 97 Cal.App.3d.141, 158 Cal.Rptr. 562, 566-67 (1979)
    “citizens have a right to drive upon the public streets of the District of Columbia or any other city
    absent a constitutionally sound reason for limiting their access.” Caneisha Mills v. D.C. 2009
    “The use of the automobile as a necessary adjunct to the earning of a livelihood in modern life
    requires us in the interest of realism to conclude that the RIGHT to use an automobile on the
    public highways partakes of the nature of a liberty within the meaning of the Constitutional
    guarantees. . .” Berberian v. Lussier (1958) 139 A2d 869, 872, See also: Schecter v. Killingsworth, 380 P.2d 136, 140; 93 Ariz. 273 (1963).
    “The right to operate a motor vehicle [an automobile] upon the public streets and highways is not a
    mere privilege. It is a right of liberty, the enjoyment of which is protected by the guarantees of the
    federal and state constitutions.” Adams v. City of Pocatello, 416 P.2d 46, 48; 91 Idaho 99 (1966).
    “A traveler has an equal right to employ an automobile as a means of transportation and to occupy the public
    highways with other vehicles in common use.” Campbell v. Walker, 78 Atl. 601, 603, 2 Boyce (Del.) 41.
    “The owner of an automobile has the same right as the owner of other vehicles to use the highway,* * * A
    traveler on foot has the same right to the use of the public highways as an automobile or any other vehicle.”
    Simeone v. Lindsay, 65 Atl. 778, 779; Hannigan v. Wright, 63 Atl. 234, 236.
    “The RIGHT of the citizen to DRIVE on the public street with freedom from police interference,
    unless he is engaged in suspicious conduct associated in some manner with criminality is a
    FUNDAMENTAL CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT which must be protected by the courts.” People v. Horton
    14 Cal. App. 3rd 667 (1971)
    “The right to make use of an automobile as a vehicle of travel long the highways of the state, is no longer
    an open question. The owners thereof have the same rights in the roads and streets as the drivers of horses
    or those riding a bicycle or traveling in some other vehicle.” House v. Cramer, 112 N.W. 3; 134 Iowa 374; Farnsworth v. Tampa Electric Co. 57 So.
    233, 237, 62 Fla. 166.
    “The automobile may be used with safety to others users of the highway, and in its proper use upon
    the highways there is an equal right with the users of other vehicles properly upon the highways.
    The law recognizes such right of use upon general principles. Brinkman v Pacholike, 84 N.E. 762, 764, 41 Ind. App. 662, 666.
    “The law does not denounce motor carriages, as such, on public ways. They have an equal right with other vehicles in
    common use to occupy the streets and roads. It is improper to say that the driver of the horse has rights in the roads
    superior to the driver of the automobile. Both have the right to use the easement.” Indiana Springs Co. v. Brown, 165 Ind. 465, 468.
    U.S. Supreme Court says No License Necessary
    To Drive Automobile On Public Highways/Streets

  • I understand legality, and freedom. Michael Carrozzo said “if there’s more drunk drivers driving because of this ?? So what , life isn’t suppose to some foam basket we lay in 24/7” Try to tell that to the mother of a child killed by a drunk driver, or to the spouse of a working man dead do to a drunk driver. There are freedoms but there are laws such as don’t drive if you drank alcohol, if you didn’t who cares about the breath test, if you did, then you are breaking a law, and should be punished. That or start giving life sentences to those that drive under the influence, then we will have less drunk drivers, and no need for this tests.

    • Well Roberto, there are a lot of criminals who have drugs and guns and other illegal items in their homes.

      The police would like to search your home at their whim just to make sure you’re not breaking any laws or in possession of such contraband.

      If you have nothing to hide you should be perfectly fine with them coming in, right?

  • Tommy Ron

  • Congrats to Kansas!

  • This ruling will effect all related cases around the country. So good.

  • Finally, someone is trying to police the police.

  • yeah merica the laughing stock of the rest of the free world

  • And for all that support this idiocy….Wonder how you would feel if your family were killed by a drunk driver who refused to be tested ten minutes before ? I am ALL for rights but NO ONE has the right to drive drunk.

    • All they have to do is get a warrant. It’s fast and easy. They have on call judges.

  • and again america goes too far…. a mention of guns in the constitution and everyone MUST HAVE ONE and how dare you deny me my right to carry an assault weapon and drive an urban assault vehicle, , a clause that says you cant be spied on by the government, and suddenly its a get out clause that only drunk drivers can benefit from, but thats hailed as a good thing!.
    If you’re hurtling around in a half ton of metal, then police must have the right to breathalyse you, IF they can show reasonable cause.

  • Agent76

    Shock, dismay, disbelief! FOURTH AMENDMENT AMENDMENT IV

    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/fourth_amendment

    • Mark El Damage

      The citizens are subject to the jurisdiction of the amendments, not The People. The People are sovereign.

  • Let’s hope there is someone out there in training divisions who are monitoring the USSC laws in order to pass the news down to officers in the field. Bill Montford, Rep. Gwen Graham, Tallahassee Democrat (hint), Tallahassee Reports, WTXL Tallahassee, #TallahaseePoliceDepartment, #LeonCountySheriffsOffice

  • what took so long?

  • We Are Change…I think it is 654, and you? take this quiz…
    fQHDDFx start now. ~~> http://goo.gl/09jfil

    Tks for this post: This ruling is MASSIVE! Can you believe it?

    The Free Thought Project… (Y)…

  • In California Driving is a PRIVILEGE, Not a Right and when you apply for a license, You AGREE to be searched. If you refuse your License is SUSPENDED.

  • Might be precedent setting in KS, but sobriety checklanes have been a no no in MI for decades.

  • malene

    The best States are those with an active, constitutional legislature. Go Kansas!

  • Boy, look how hard they work when the SCOTUS has an opening.

  • I have been telling people this for years

  • Fuck the police!

  • Wow I am genuinely speechless

  • Yes, Way to Go KS !

  • Mary Ashton

    So, the white guy comes out from a bar totally trashed and drives home has no repercussions, while a man stopped and searched for walking while black can be beaten and thrown into jail! Great justice!

    • Mike Thompson

      SO when did this become a Black / White Issue Mary!! They still go to Jail.

    • Ricky Dimick

      Right because color was ever a part of the article Jesus fuck your either dumber then a box of rocks , or your black…….. Do us all a favor and don’t reply to things that are too much for your tiny brain to comprehend

  • Rationally, I’m sure nobody wants “fall down drunk” drivers on the road. I’m also sure you shouldn’t face all that comes with a DUI if you have 1-2 beers and go home.

    The zero tolerance legal limit of BAC policy is impractical when you realize tolerance, body chemistry, and driving ability differ from person to person. If a person is sober enough to pass field tests then they should be okay to drive, but that doesn’t matter if they still get you to blow and its over the limit.

    If you’re driving erratically then breathalyzer or not you’re getting pulled. If you’ve ever been sober at a party you know it’s pretty easy to tell when folks are past their limit, so I’d suspect trained officers would be keen on picking up on the signs. The only legal downfall is the evidence BAC provides, but since EVERYTHING else cops say is taken as gospel in court i doubt this is a major hurdle. If falsely accused then insist on taking one at the station and collect your harassment money.

  • That’s great news will I get all the money back for all the DUI’s and OUI’S DWI’S I WILL BE WAITING THE CHECK MUST BE IN THE MAIL

  • To get to Kansas click your magic ruby slippers three times and say…There is no place like Home , there is no place like home!

  • Brian what do you think?

  • I say, a correct ruling.

  • I was pretty sure “probable cause” was required, legally, to do any kind of test of this type. Probable Cause being a narrowly defined set of circumstances under the law rather than “meh, he’s got white hair. pull his ass over”. Looks like just a reaffirmation of an existing law. In order to compel somebody in this manner. there has to be a reason you believe he’s violating the law. Mandatory DUI’s of random people don’t fit the bill.

  • Cam Alft

    just don’t enter the driver license scam………

  • Marion1

    This has already been argued in other states. They’ll do what others have done, change it to a “civil penalty” and revoke the drivers license, call the fine a “fee” and force the person to take $2500 alcohol classes and raise their insurance premiums to $2200 every six months. MADD gets a large portion of that money as does the arresting officer and the National Safety Council. It’s a nice profit for private businesses.