Georgia Supreme Court has thrown out a law that required drivers
involved in serious accidents to submit to drug testing or face
the loss of driving privileges for a year.
court ruled Oct. 6 the implied consent law authorized a search and
seizure without probable cause, violating state and federal constitutional
rights, Albany’s WALB TV reported.
the provision, any driver involved in an accident causing serious
injury or death was presumed to have given prior consent to a blood,
breath or urine test to determine the presence of alcohol or other
drugs in his or her body.
the test made drivers subject to a suspension of their license for
at least one year. Evidence that they refused to be tested could
also be used against them at trial.
court said the law was problematic because it compelled testing
without any independent reason to think those involved in accidents
were impaired, the news station reported.
warn the ruling could cripple law-enforcement efforts. But the lawyer
who challenged the law noted the court left intact a provision that
requires testing of those arrested for driving under the influence.
is not throwing out all blood, breath and urine tests,” lawyer William
Doyle Healan III told The Associated Press. “It only prevents
police from taking blood, breath or urine when there’s been an accident
and police don’t have any reason to arrest someone for DUI.”