Arizona Supreme Court rules in blood draw case

May 30, 2013

The Arizona Supreme Court has reversed a lower court decision, in a case involving the rules about drawing blood from juveniles. Last year, a school monitor in Pima County smelled marijuana on a student, and saw drug paraphernalia in his car. A law enforcement officer drew blood for a drug test, and then arrested the student for DUI. The student argued the results of that test should be suppressed, saying the consent for the draw had not been voluntary.

A juvenile court judge agreed, but the Arizona Court of Appeals reversed that decision. Thursday’s Supreme Court ruling agrees with the juvenile court judge, that the consent for the blood draw in this case had not been given voluntarily.

In their decision, the justices write that they “reject the state’s contention that age should be disregarded in assessing a juvenile’s consent to draw blood,” and that courts should not blind themselves to the reality that people under 18 tend to be less mature are more vulnerable to negative influences and outside pressures.

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