DUI arrests often arise out of traffic stops initiated due to erratic driving. While most people pull over when they see a police car with flashing lights or sirens, some people are unaware that they are being chased and continue driving. Although police are allowed to follow fleeing individuals, there are limits to what they can do to apprehend them in situations involving misdemeanors. The United States Supreme Court affirmed this in a recent ruling issued in a case in which the defendant was charged with a DUI following a warrantless arrest. If you are faced with charges that you committed a DUI crime, it is in your best interest to speak to a Pennsylvania DUI defense lawyer about your options.
The Defendant’s Arrest
It is alleged that the defendant was blaring his horn and listening to loud music while driving. He drove by a police officer, who immediately began following him. In an attempt to compel the defendant to stop, the officer turned on his overhead lights. The defendant kept driving, though, and eventually entered his garage. The officer stopped the defendant’s garage door from closing, stepped into the garage, and began interviewing the defendant. He noticed that the defendant smelled like he had been drinking alcohol and was acting inebriated.
According to reports, the police then asked the defendant to take field sobriety tests. The defendant performed poorly on the tests and was arrested for DWI. Lab tests revealed that his BAC was over three times the legal limit. The defendant asked for the evidence against him to be suppressed, claiming that it was obtained without a warrant, in violation of his Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable search and seizure. The court refused his motion, and the case went to the Supreme Court following a series of appeals. Continue reading