“Unconscious People Can’t Consent to Police Searches”

Police officers in Wisconsin “drew Gerald Mitchell’s blood while he was unconscious—to test his blood alcohol content after a drunk-driving arrest. The state has attempted to excuse the officers by citing an implied-consent statute, which provides that simply driving on state roads constitutes consent to such searches.” Although the right to privacy are not absolute, there are problems with that approach, made worse by a strange Wisconsin Supreme Court opinion extending to highway searches a Fourth Amendment search exception for “pervasively regulated businesses.” [Ilya Shapiro and Patrick Moran on Cato cert amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to review Mitchell v. Wisconsin]

One Comment

  • This reminds me on an unfortunate incident from a couple of years ago. A nurse following the law was handcuffed for legally preventing the police from drawing blood from an unconscious man without a warrant. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yia7qs01z1M

    The nurse was never charged but it appears that the police officer didn’t get it that he was in violation of the law. He never apologized and sued the city for $1,500,000.00 because he was fired. https://www.sltrib.com/news/2018/11/06/former-detective-jeff/

    The nurse received a $500,000.00 settlement, but it wasn’t from the police officer. It was from the taxpayers of Salt Lake City.