It is a Michigan driver's absolute right to refuse to submit to a breath or blood test when requested to do so by an arresting officer. However, in virtually every instance, the event of your refusal to submit to the requested test will cause the police to seek a search warrant granting them the authority to draw your blood. There are many intricacies involving the seeking of a Michigan OWI blood test search warrant. That is why you will need to seek the assistance of an experienced Michigan OWI defense attorney. A qualified attorney will be able to determine whether there are facts and circumstances of the blood draw that can allow for an attack against its admissibility in court.
In the absence of a breathalyzer BAC reading, the police will seek to have the results of your blood draw presented to the court. The request for a Blood Search Warrant is a document which most police officers have executed dozens, if not hundreds of times throughout their careers. The police will contact a designated Judge or Magistrate, who is located in the district of your arrest, and will then fax or personally deliver the request for blood warrant to him, regardless of the time of morning. In fact, most courts will have a Judge or Magistrate on “duty call” for designated nights of the week. If it is that judge's particular duty call evening he is very much expecting to be woken by the police at 2 a.m., 3 a.m., or even later with a request to sign a Michigan blood search warrant. If your Michigan OWI arrest involved an accident, particularly one in which a person was injured or killed, this is especially true.
Just because the police's request for a Michigan blood search warrant was granted by a judge or magistrate does not automatically make it a valid search warrant. An experienced Michigan OWI defense attorney will want to exhaustively investigate the circumstances of the warrant, isolating issues which could lead to its inadmissibility. One basic rule is that an officer cannot direct a hospital or clinic to draw your blood prior to the signing of the blood search warrant. On occasion, an Michigan OWI defense attorney's investigation may show that the blood was drawn at perhaps 3:00 a.m. and the warrant wasn't actually signed until 3:15 a.m. In that case, the warrant can be easily attacked. It is only through a thorough investigation of the facts and circumstances surrounding the warrant that a Michigan OWI defense attorney can isolate fatal deficiencies.
However, more often than not, the Michigan blood search warrant will be found valid. That does not mean that an experienced Michigan OWI defense attorney can no longer challenge the blood test. For instance, the police must handle the evidence, and blood is evidence, in a very specific manner. This is referred to as “chain of custody.” Every minute of the whereabouts of the blood, from the moment it is drawn into the vial at the hospital to the moment it is presented , must be accounted for.
Michigan OWI defense attorney Richard I. Lippitt is highly skilled and experienced in investigating and challenging the facts and circumstances of Michigan blood search warrants. Mr. Lippitt appears in Michigan courts over 350 times each year in defense of Michigan OWIs and stands ready to provide you with a free, no obligation meeting regarding your Michigan OWI. Please contact us via the form on this page or call (248) 921-7164.