Bill tackles blood-test refusals in DUI cases, passes in state Senate

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Graphic courtesy: MGN Online

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – Refusing to take a blood alcohol test for suspicion of drunken driving could become more difficult under legislation approved by the state Senate Tuesday.

The measure, known as Senate Bill 74, would allow police to seek a search warrant for blood alcohol concentration tests in all driving under the influence investigations. Under current law, police can only seek a search warrant for the tests in DUI investigations that involve serious injury or death.

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Drivers can have their licenses taken for refusing to take the tests under the current law, but according to testimony given during a committee hearing on SB 74, the penalties have been somewhat blunted by the use of ignition interlocks. Those are Breathalyzer-type devices connected to the ignition systems of vehicles. Drivers charged with DUI can sometimes get back behind the wheel by agreeing to install the devices.

The bill now goes to the House.