Kansas DUI law doesn’t change that often but every few years there are a few minor changes. This is the law that was passed by the legislature and is a few hundred words long. Obviously the legislature can’t think of every single scenario that could possibly happen and provide how to deal with it legally in those few hundred words. There is where case law kicks in.
When a prosecutor and a defense attorney disagree on how a law should be applied or what it means, case law will be created. This disagreement causes a case to be litigated. Each lawyer will argue their side of the law and a judge will rule on the issues. If either side disagrees with the judge’s ruling, they can appeal it to a higher level of court. Ultimately, when all the appeals are exhausted, the judge’s interpretation/ruling of what the law is or how it should be applied then becomes law. After this happens, other attorneys can review the judge’s decision and rely on it when they are evaluating future DUI cases.
Obviously, there have been tons of DUI cases litigated. Below are a few examples of cases that have been appealed and helped mold Kansas’ current DUI law.
Case Law for DUI in Kansas
*This is not an exhaustive list, just a few common issues
Schmerber vs. California
384 U.S. 757 (1966)
This case established that blood tests on an individual accused of a DUI are a search subject to the 4th amendment.
These cases held that an individual’s refusal to submit to an alcohol test is admissible at any trial for DUI. These cases also upheld the statute that outlaws plea bargaining a DUI charge down to avoid the mandatory penalties.
This case upheld the constitutionality of some DUI checkpoints. It essentially says that when a DUI checkpoint occurs a “seizure” occurs in the 4th Amendment context, however it is possible to have a checkpoint that does not violate the 4th Amendment.
This case interpreted K.S.A. 8-1001(k). It requires that a law enforcement officer make an individual aware of their rights before they submit to a breath test. It also requires that the officer not mislead individuals as to their rights.
This case held that Preliminary Breath Tests are subject to scrutiny under the 4th Amendment and the statutory implied consent rule does not serve to give consent to a law enforcement officer who desires to administer a PBT to a person suspected of DUI.
This case held that evidence of a refusal of a PBT is inadmissible to prove the offense of DUI. It also held that a defendant’s refusal to take a breath test does not implicate the privilege against self-incrimination under the 5th amendment.
This case held that the institutional noncompliance with and systematic disregard of the State Supreme Court’s prior decision, warranted dismissal of a DUI charge. This case established that police cannot hold an individual charged with DUI whom wants to bond out of jail unless an individualized determination is made as to whether the driver is intoxicated and a danger to themselves or others.
This case held that a misstatement of the law addressing the effect of taking or refusing a breath test, in that case a PBT, rendered the implied consent advisories out of compliance with the statute and interfered with the driver’s ability and right to withdraw their implied consent to the test.
This case held that the “good-faith exception” to the exclusionary rule applied to permit admission of blood test results obtained by law enforcement’s reliance on an implied consent statute that was later determined to be unconstitutional.
This case confirmed that the “implied consent” statute does not work around the 4th Amendment, drivers are able to withdraw their consent. The statute that criminalizes the refusal of a blood/breath test is unconstitutional on its face.
This case held that the DC-70 “Implied Consent Advisory” that was required to be read to all individuals that police intended to have submit to a breath alcohol test was inaccurate and the information in the advisory unduly coerced Nece (and thousands of other individuals suspected of DUI) into submitting to a breath test.