An accused person must be driving a vehicle under Pennsylvania law in order to be convicted of driving under the influence. The issue sometimes arises when the police find someone who is sleeping in a car or was reportedly observed driving by witnesses but not by the authorities. The issue may arise in a recent drunk driving arrest by the state police in the Pocono Mountains area of the state.
Too many drivers in Allegheny County have convictions on their driving records because of errors on two of the state's most common breathalyzer tests, the Intoxilyzer 8000.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court recently delivered a ruling that forbids police from taking a blood sample to test for DUI from an unconscious suspect. The decision is not surprising because it appears to parallel U.S. Supreme Court decisions in drunk driving cases. It is a Fourth Amendment violation for authorities to conduct a search in that manner.
Pennsylvania DUI laws require that an individual who refuses to take a blood-alcohol test is subject to a mandatory loss of his or her driver's license for one year. For a commercial truck driver in that predicament, the driver will also lose his or her commercial license forever, according to a recent Commonwealth Court decision. The appellate decision has a couple of interesting legal issues with respect to Pennsylvania's drunk driving laws and pertaining to its administrative laws regarding license suspensions.
The possibility of a DUI charge should worry anyone. Whether you were drinking before getting in the car or not, you will probably be on edge if a police officer pulls you over and asks you to take a sobriety test or breath test. Do you legally have to comply?