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OWI – Refusal

State v. Robert J. Ruggles, 2010AP1587, District 2, 11/3/10

court of appeals decision (1-judge, not for publication); for Ruggles: Robert C. Raymond; BiC; Resp.

A driver doesn’t have a constitutional right to be informed that a blood draw could be performed without his consent.

¶9        It is well established that there is no constitutional right to refuse a request for a chemical test.  Crandall, 133 Wis. 2d at 255, 259-60. …

¶10      “To prove a due process violation, [a defendant] must show that the State deprived him [or her] of a constitutionally protected interest.”  Id. at 240.  As noted above, there is no constitutional due process interest in the right to refuse a chemical test.  However, there is a statutory requirement that the accused be provided with the information set forth in WIS. STAT. § 343.305(4), and our supreme court has held that information, set forth in the form read to Ruggles, is all that is required to meet due process requirements.  See Crandall, 133 Wis. 2d at 260; see also Reitter, 227 Wis. 2d at 225 (“The law requires no more than what the implied consent statute sets forth.”). Here, the form warned Ruggles that refusal would result in his license being revoked and would subject him to other penalties.  This warning “made it clear that refusing the test was not a ‘safe harbor,’ free of adverse consequences.”  Crandall, 133 Wis. 2d at 255 (quoting South Dakota v. Neville, 459 U.S. 553, 566 (1983)).  There is no constitutional or statutory requirement that the accused be specifically informed of all possible consequences.  Crandall, 133 Wis. 2d at 259-60.  “[B]ecause the ‘Informing the Accused’ Form adequately alerts accused drivers to the testing process and the consequences of refusal, the provisions of the implied consent statute do not violate due process.”[4] Reitter, 227 Wis. 2d at 240.

¶11      Because Ruggles was provided with all of the statutorily required information before his refusal, there was no violation of his constitutional due process rights. We therefore reverse the circuit court’s dismissal order and remand for further proceedings.

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