FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE : Friday, May 23, 2014
CONTACT: Sara Rabern (605)773-3215
South Dakota Supreme Court to Hear Oral Arguments in State’s DUI Implied Consent Law
PIERRE, S.D – Attorney General Marty Jackley announced today that the South Dakota Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in State of South Dakota vs. Shauna Fierro on Wednesday, May 28th. The State of South Dakota filed an intermediate appeal from a magistrate judge’s order suppressing the blood and test results taken pursuant to the State’s implied consent law.
“The Attorney General petitioned the South Dakota Supreme Court to address this important constitutional and public safety issue, and to ensure that our criminal laws are applied consistently throughout South Dakota. It is the State’s position that the state legislature has the authority to enact laws reasonably intended to protect our citizens,” stated Jackley.
In the 2006 state legislature enacted SDCL 32-23-10, that provides any person who operates a vehicle in the state is considered to have given consent to the withdrawal of blood and chemical analysis of the person’s blood or breath to determine the amount of alcohol in the person’s blood; and as such that the arresting officer may, subsequent to the arrest of an operator in violation of South Dakota’s DUI laws, require the operator to submit to the withdrawal of blood. The McNeely decision does not address the legality of the withdrawal of blood incident to a lawful arrest nor does it fully address what would constitute exigent circumstances to justify proceeding without a warrant. The South Dakota Supreme Court has issued opinions that have upheld the warrantless withdrawal of blood from individuals lawfully arrested for violation of the state DUI and associated laws.
There have been a number of rulings on the implied consent law and the existence of good faith since July of 2013, but no consensus from these lower courts. It is anticipated through this appeal that the South Dakota Supreme Court will decide what effect, if any, the United States Supreme Court decision in Missouri v. McNeely may have on the state’s implied consent law and any constitutional limitations and requirements on blood draw searches.
The argument is scheduled for 9:00 a.m. at the Supreme Court’s chambers in the State Capitol Building.