Birchfield v. North Dakota, No. 14-1468 (SCOTUS 2016)-North Dakota passed a law that made it an additional crime to refuse to submit to a breath or blood test for driving drunk. Birchfield refused to submit to a blood draw. He was charged for that offense. He appealed.
The Supreme Court held: The Fourth Amendment permits warrantless breath tests incident to arrests for drunk driving but not warrantless blood tests.
Utah v. Strieff, 14-1373 (SCOTUS 2016)-Det Fackrell got an anonymous tip of a drug house in Salt Lake City. He watched the house for a week. He observed several people make brief stops at the house. He saw Strieff exit the house. The detective detained him nearby. He obtained Strieff’s identification and ran a warrant check on him. He had a traffic warrant and was arrested. He was searched and methamphetamine was found on him. Strieff moved to have the evidence excluded as the fruit of an unlawful seizure. The trial court denied the motion, but the Utah Supreme Court ordered the evidence suppressed. The Supreme Court held that there was no flagrant police misconduct. The discovery of a pre-existing untainted arrest warrant attenuated the connection between the unlawful stop and the evidence being found. The evidence can be used against Strieff.