Blood Tests in DUI Cases
Under certain circumstances, a person charged with DUI in Virginia is required to provide a blood sample.
When an individual is stopped and placed under arrest for DUI in Virginia, they are then required to submit a sample of their breath or blood for blood tests. Failure to do so will result in the individual being charged with refusal to comply with Virginia’s implied consent law.
The individual “shall submit to a blood test” in three situations: unavailability of a breath test machine, inability of the individual to submit to a breath test, or when the officer believes the individual to be under the influence of drugs, or alcohol and drugs.
Who Performs the Blood Test?
Under Virginia law, only certain medical personnel are permitted to draw blood for purposes of analysis. These medical personnel are further required to perform the blood draw using carefully mandated procedures, and must use approved cleansing solutions and sterilization procedures. Failure to abide by these procedures, or having an unauthorized individual perform the blood test, is grounds for having the results of the analysis suppressed in court.
After the blood is drawn, the statute mandates how the blood is store, what information must be included with the sample, and how the sample is transported to the testing laboratory. Once the blood sample has been tested, the lab is required to maintain a sample for a period of 90 days to allow the tested individual the opportunity to have an independent laboratory test the sample. If these requirements are not followed, the blood test results will likely not be admitted at trial.
For over 20 years, The Law Office of James J. McCoart, III, has vigorously represented those accused of Driving Under the Influence. If you, or your family member, are interested in a no-cost consultation regarding a DUI charge in Virginia, then contact The Law Office of James J. McCoart, III, by phone (703) 369-2734, or email.