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Sunday, September 27, 2009

North Carolina Changes DUI/DWI Law

I wrote an earlier post addressing the recent case of Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts. The North Carolina legislature issued a response to the Supreme Court ruling in Melendez-Diaz. Four pages of single space text, that appears to be written in the English language, essentially changes the previous law that allowed the State to admit blood and breath test results in DUI/DWI cases without a witness. This is important because once the US Supreme Court issues an opinion ruling a law unconstitutional, the state must change the law. Here is the new statute- good luck reading!
http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/Sessions/2009/Bills/Senate/PDF/S252v5.pdf

With respect to blood and breath results in DUI/DWI cases in North Carolina, the State will now be required to notify the accused 15 business days before the date they intend to introduce the result in court and provide the accused with a copy of the result. The accused will then have five business days before the proceeding to file a written objection with the court. If the objection is not filed, the result can be admitted without any witness.

Jessica Smith from the UNC School of government does a great job explaining the new law. Here is the link to her summary- http://www.sog.unc.edu/programs/crimlaw/melendez-diazjsmithmemo.pdf

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posted by Carilyn Ibsen at

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