Missouri DWI law passes Senate but warrantless blood draw portion removed

dwi checkpoint.jpgMissouri DWI laws are one step closer to becoming stronger in Missouri, as the Senate passed Senate Bill 880 today. After reaching a compromise, the portion of the bill that was passed in the House that would allow blood draws without a warrant if there was a suspicion that the driver was driving while intoxicated was removed.

The Missouri House must now pass the Senate version of the bill. After that, Governor Nixon will have to sign the legislation into law. If Governor Nixon signs the bill, it would become law on August 28, 2010.

Update: Governor Nixon will sign the DWI reform bill into law in both St. Louis and Jefferson City on June 2, 2010. He will sign the bill first in St. Louis at 1:30 at the Missouri State Highway Patrol Super Site, and then will head to the Missouri Highway Patrol Training Academy in Jefferson City for a second signing.

The new law states that refusal to submit to a blood alcohol test is a Class A misdemeanor, and 2 points will be assessed against the driver’s license for such refusal. It also prohibits those who have been found guilty or pled guilty to refusal to submit to a blood alcohol test from having a limited drivers license. Drivers who are caught driving with a BAC of 0.15 or higher with no prior alcohol offenses will have their license revoked for 90 days, and then will have their license restricted for another 275 days. For more on the new law, click here.