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Argued May 1, 2001

On certification to the Superior Court, Appellate Division, whose opinion is reported at 333 N.J. Super. 247 (2000).

This case implicates defendant’s right to be free of unreasonable searches under the federal and State Constitutions. The police arrested defendant for driving while intoxicated. Thereafter, they transported defendant to a hospital where an officer requested that medical personnel take samples of his blood to test for drug and alcohol content. Over defendant’s strenuous objections, his legs and his left arm were strapped to a table, and several persons, including two police officers, held him down as a nurse drew eight vials of blood. The Law Division disallowed the use of that evidence on constitutional grounds. On leave to appeal granted to the State, the Appellate Division reversed, finding no constitutional violation. We disagree. We hold that under the totality of the circumstances the police used unreasonable force in obtaining defendant’s blood sample. In view of that holding, we conclude that the Law Division properly suppressed defendant’s blood alcohol content level as evidence of intoxication.

 
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