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Name: People v. Balov
Case #: D073018
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 05/23/2018

Defendant’s consent to a blood test after his arrest for driving under the influence was voluntary even though the arresting officer did not inform him of the statutory consequences of refusing a test and that he could object. Balov was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI). The officer informed him that, under the implied consent law, he was required to submit to a chemical test, either a breath test or a blood test. But the officer did not inform him of the consequences of refusing a test. Balov consented to a blood test. Prior to his trial on misdemeanor DUI charges, Balov moved to suppress the results of the warrantless blood test, arguing that his consent was not valid because he was not advised of the consequences of refusing chemical testing. The trial court denied the motion and the appellate division of the trial court affirmed. The matter was certified for transfer to the Court of Appeal. Held: Affirmed. Under the implied consent law, a person who drives a motor vehicle is deemed to have given his consent to chemical testing of his blood or breath for the purpose of determining its alcohol content, if lawfully arrested for specified DUI offenses. The law also provides that a person shall be told that his failure to submit to or complete the required chemical testing will result in a fine, mandatory imprisonment if the person is convicted of a specified DUI offense, and the suspension or revocation of the person’s driver’s license. (Veh. Code, § 23612, subd. (a)(1).) A driver may withdraw his implied consent and refuse to consent to a chemical test. Based on the totality of the circumstances in this case, Balov voluntarily consented to the blood test. Although the officer told Balov that he was required to submit to a chemical test and did not explain the consequences of refusing a chemical test, there was no evidence the officer attempted to deceive Balov about his right to refuse the test. At no point before or after Balov consented to the test did he object. The court disagreed with People v. Mason (2016) 8 Cal.App.5th Supp. 11.

The full opinion is available on the court’s website here: