DWI Test-Refusal Conviction Overturned

 In Local News

St. Cloud DWI Attorneys 

Serving Clients Throughout Minnesota From Our St. Cloud Office.

As the days of Summer have simmered down, the excitement of the Minnesota Supreme Court’s decision in Johnson v. State is just getting started. Johnson v. State, N.W.2d (Minn. 2018).

To understand this decision, we must first look at the United State Supreme Court decision in Birchfield where the Court ruled police cannot require a person suspected of driving while intoxicated to submit to a blood or urine test without a warrant or without exigent circumstances to justify the warrantless search. Birchfield v. North Dakota, 579 U.S. (2016). Of course, there is no problem with police officers asking for a sample of your breath when they have probable cause to believe you are driving while impaired. However, you have every right to refuse a blood, or urine, test when the police do not have a warrant, or no exigent circumstance applies.

After this decision in Birchfield, the Minnesota Supreme Court decided in Johnson v. State that because the Implied Consent Advisory was partially unconstitutional the decision is substantive and applies retroactively. This means thousands of DWI test-refusal convictions may be thrown out. Pleading guilty to DWI test-refusal due to not consenting to a blood or urine test is unconstitutional and therefore trial courts cannot punish you for a crime that doesn’t exist. This ruling specifically applies to those people convicted of a DWI test-refusal before 6/23/16.

So, if you are one of the thousands of people who have a DWI test-refusal conviction you should immediately contact an attorney. Here at Gierman Law, LLC we can help you file a post-conviction petition. The post-conviction petition isn’t a guarantee that your conviction will be dismissed. Each case is different. Rather, the trial court will have to determine if the Implied Consent Advisory was unconstitutional as applied to you. Meaning, if the police did not have a warrant, or if no exigent circumstances existed to justify a warrantless search of your blood or urine, then your case could be thrown out just like Johnson’s.

Minnesota DWI Attorneys

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Gierman Law, LLC

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