When was the last time you, or someone you know, was asked by law enforcement to take a urine test? Did you submit to the officer’s request or not? Either way, you may be interested to know that the Minnesota court system’s view on such requests may be changing. Minneapolis DWI lawyers watched the latest sign of a shift in opinion occur in late December. The details were covered by Star Tribune reporter, James Walsh.
Walsh took note of the Thompson v. State of Minnesota court case, which called into question the legality of the state’s existing law. Based on coverage of the high-profile case, Thompson’s counsel partially relied on the Fourth Amendment to make his client’s case. For those who may not remember the amendment verbatim, it is designed to address two common practices, search and seizure.
Many Americans are familiar with those practices and understand that warrants are frequently associated with high-profile seizures and searches. However, they may not understand how the two practices impact their personal lives. To continue, some states feel that ordering suspects to submit to urine tests is reasonable based on the suspects’ respective situations. So they attempt to impress that belief on their citizenry.
Other states believe the opposite. They take the stance that regardless of the circumstances; suspects have the right to refuse all of law enforcement’s warrantless requests for urine tests. In those states, similar may be said for other forced tests (e.g. saliva, blood, sweat and hair).
As such, citizens need to be aware of their states’ laws and law enforcement practices as well as federal interpretation of the laws. That understanding could obviously make all the difference in their respective cases, especially give the current shifts in opinion. To learn more about how Minnesota’s judicial system views warrantless tests, please contact a Minneapolis DWI lawyer.