Colorado police officers cannot draw your blood if you are stopped under suspicion of Driving Under the Influence. If arrested under suspicion of DUI and you choose a blood test, the police officer must arrange for a nurse, EMT, or phlebotomist to draw your blood.
Colorado is not like all states.
Arizona police can now demand an on-scene blood test for DUI suspects, but at least one man is seeking compensation for injuries that he says occurred because of a blood test. What penalties can you face for refusing a BAC test in Denver, Colorado? When are blood tests inadmissible in Colorado courts?
It’s Official: On-Scene Blood Tests are Mandatory in Arizona
Police in Arizona are now permitted to take blood samples at the scene when a driver is suspected of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
It used to be up to the suspect to decide whether or not to submit to a blood test, but the new law now demands that suspected drunk drivers submit to a blood test at the scene. No more trips to a local hospital for blood testing—the officer will draw blood from the suspect right then and there.
Refusing to submit to an on-scene blood test carries a mandatory 12-month suspension of the suspect’s driver’s license. That doesn’t make refusal a viable option for most people, even if they fear the deputy does not have enough medical experience to draw blood properly.
The good news is, blood tests tend to be more accurate that breath tests in determining whether or not a driver is intoxicated.
The bad news is, it may not be safe for a police officer to draw blood at the scene.
Blood Test Leads to Personal Injury Case
James Green recently filed a personal injury lawsuit against Arizona law enforcement for an infection that he says was caused by an officer taking blood. Green was suspected of DUI when the officer drew blood at the scene.
In the suit he said his arm became swollen and infected after an officer tried twice to draw blood despite being near a medical facility. Green is now seeking $500,000 in punitive damages after the infection lasted for five months. He can only work part of that time and the infection may cause long-term health problems.
Interestingly, his DUI case was dropped because of the way blood was drawn. If Arizona is attempting to crack down on drunk drivers, one has to question whether or not they are achieving their goal with this method, particularly when complications could lead to a number of cases being thrown out of court.
Can it Happen in Colorado?
So far, there haven’t been any attempts to make blood tests mandatory in Colorado. And thankfully, blood tests must be administered by medical personnel, not deputies on the scene.
If a suspect refuses a blood test, they will lose their license for one year and refusal can be used as evidence against the defendant in court. If you were recently arrested for DUI, it’s crucial to contact a DUI lawyer in Denver to help you defend your rights in court. Even if you submitted to a blood test, the evidence may still be challenged.