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Name: People v. Vannesse
Case #: B283857
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 6
Opinion Date: 05/16/2018
Summary

If a police officer advises a person who is arrested for a DUI offense that his only choice for testing is to submit to a blood test, the test results are admissible in criminal proceedings if the arrestee freely and voluntarily consents to the blood test. Following an accident in which the investigating officer concluded Vannesse was driving under the influence of drugs, or a combination of drugs and alcohol, he was charged with driving under the influence of a drug. (Veh. Code, § 23152, subd. (e).) Vannesse moved to suppress the evidence of a blood test on the ground that his oral and written consent to the blood test was not valid because he was not advised, as required by state law, that he had the choice of either a blood test or a breath test. (See Veh. Code, § 23612, subd. (a)(2)(B).) The officer only told him about the requirement to submit to a chemical test, and that a sample of his blood would be drawn. The motion was denied, and the ruling was affirmed by the appellate division of the superior court. The Court of Appeal transferred the matter to itself. Held: Affirmed. There is no Fourth Amendment violation when a motorist freely and voluntarily consents to a warrantless chemical test of his blood. The Court of Appeal here concluded that substantial evidence supported the finding that Vannesse freely and voluntarily consented to the blood draw. The failure of the officer to comply with section 23612, subdivision (a)(2)(B), did not prejudice Vannesse and is of no constitutional significance. Even if Vannesse had chosen a breath test, the officer could and would have required him to submit to a blood test based on section 23612, subdivision (a)(2)(C), which provides that a person who chooses a breath test may also be required to provide a blood sample if the officer has reasonable cause to believe the person was driving under the influence of drugs and there is a clear indication that a blood test will reveal evidence of the person being under the influence.

The full opinion is available on the court’s website here: http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/B283857M.PDF