Search and Seizure

Justices Appear Skeptical of Warrantless Blood Tests

Perhaps a needle too far

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The Supreme Court appeared reluctant Wednesday to allow police to routinely order blood tests for unwilling drunken-driving suspects without at least trying to obtain a search warrant from a judge.

The court heard arguments Wednesday in a case about a disputed blood test from Missouri, against the backdrop of a serious national problem of more than 10,000 deaths from crashes involving alcohol-impaired drivers in 2010, about one every 51 minutes.