On March 25, a judge decided to postpone the jury trial of an Indiana man who is facing charges in connection with a fatal accident that took place in September 2012. The fatal accident took place on Sept. 15, 2012, at the intersection of U.S. 231 and U.S. 41, according to police. The defendant struck another vehicle, which resulted in serious injuries to the driver and the death of the passenger. The defendant allegedly ignored a red light on U.S. 41 and struck an eastbound vehicle on U.S. 231 as it passed through the intersection.
The defendant in the case is being charged with reckless homicide and two other Class C felonies and Class B felony operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content in excess of .15 that resulted in death. His attorney filed a motion in the Lake County Criminal Court requesting that the court suppresses documents that resulted in the defendant being taken into police custody and the subsequent charges. The attorney alleges the defendant’s Fourth Amendment rights were violated when officers took his blood to determine his blood alcohol content level. After the accident, the defendant’s blood was taken at the medical center where he was transported. The test results indicated that the defendant’s blood alcohol content was .18, which is more than two times the legal limit of .08.
Police used a probable cause document to obtain the defendant’s blood sample; however, the defense attorney said that law enforcement should have gotten a search warrant. The difference between the two documents is primarily that a search warrant requires a judge’s signature while a probable cause document does not.
In the event the judge decides to suppress the BAC evidence, the prosecutor will likely appeal the ruling. If the judge chooses to deny the suppression, the defense attorney will likely appeal.
A DUI defense attorney might file a motion to have evidence suppressed in the event that police officers might have violated a defendant’s rights when they collected the evidence. If no rights violations have occurred, the defense attorney might negotiate for a plea bargain on the defendant’s behalf.