DWI and Consent to Breath or Blood Specimen
I was “passed out” in a hospital bed, how could the police draw my blood without my consent?
Anyone licensed by the State of Texas to drive a motor vehicle on public highways is deemed to have consented to the taking of a blood or breath test to determine alcohol concentration. Tex. Trans. Code sec 724.011. This consent is in effect, in most situations, unless the driver expressly withdraws it (i.e. “refuses” the arresting officer’s request for a sample). See, Tex. Trans. Code sec 724.013. If the arrested person is alive but otherwise incapable of refusing the test, for example unconscious, the person has not withdrawn their consent and, pursuant to Texas statute, a specimen may be taken by a physician, qualified technician, registered professional nurse, licensed vocational nurse, or a licensed or certified emergency medical technician-intermediate or paramedic appropriately authorized to take a specimen, without first obtaining the unresponsive person’s contemporaneous consent. Tex. Trans. Code sec 724.014.