1998 Regular Session
To: Judiciary A; Game and Fish
By: Representative Janus
House Bill 630
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 59-23-5, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO AUTHORIZE DRAWING BLOOD OF UNCONSCIOUS PERSONS AND PERSONS INVOLVED IN ACCIDENTS WHERE AN INJURY OCCURS UNDER THE ALCOHOL BOATING SAFETY ACT; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 59-23-5, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
59-23-5. (1) A person who operates a watercraft in waters over which this state has jurisdiction shall be deemed to have given consent to submit to a chemical test or test of his breath for the purpose of determining the alcoholic content of his blood, as a condition of operating the watercraft in this state.
(2) A law enforcement officer who has probable cause to believe that a person has committed an offense under Sections 1 through 4 of this act shall offer the person the opportunity to submit to a chemical test. It is not necessary for the law enforcement officer to offer a chemical test to an unconscious person. A law enforcement officer may have the blood of an unconscious person or a person involved in an accident where an injury or death occurs drawn for testing without the consent of a judge if the law enforcement officer has probable cause to believe that such person has committed an offense under this chapter. A law enforcement officer may offer a person more than one (1) chemical test under this section. However, all tests must be administered within three (3) hours after the officer has probable cause to believe the person violated Sections 1 through 4 of this act. If a person refuses to submit to a chemical test under Sections 1 through 4 of this act, the person shall be informed by the law enforcement officer that the refusal to submit to the test shall subject him to arrest and punishment consistent with the penalties prescribed in Section 4 of this act for persons submitting to the test, and that the court shall order the person not to operate a watercraft for at least one (1) year.
(3) If the chemical test results in prima facie evidence that the person is intoxicated, he shall immediately be arrested.
(4) (a) The law enforcement officer arresting a person pursuant to the provisions of Sections 1 through 4 of this act shall inform the person arrested that:
(i) The person arrested has the right to be represented by legal counsel;
(ii) The person arrested may waive the right to be represented by legal counsel; and
(iii) The charge for which the person is being arrested may be used against him, upon conviction, for purposes of receiving an enhanced penalty as provided in Section 59-23-7.
(b) The citation or affidavit which is issued to the person arrested shall be uniform throughout all jurisdictions in the State of Mississippi and shall contain a place for the arresting official to sign, stating that he has advised the person arrested of the information contained in paragraph (a) of this subsection. The judge hearing the case or accepting the guilty plea, as the case may be, shall sign in a place provided on the citation or affidavit stating that the person arrested either employed an attorney or waived his right to an attorney after having been advised pursuant to paragraph (a) of this subsection. If the person arrested employed an attorney, the name, address and telephone number of the attorney shall be written on the citation or affidavit.
(c) The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks shall prepare and furnish, no later than July 1, 1995, to all jurisdictions in the State of Mississippi a uniform citation form consistent with Sections 1 through 4 of this act, which shall be used in all jurisdictions in the State of Mississippi.
(d) The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks shall notify, by whatever means it deems appropriate, all law enforcement officers who are authorized to enforce the provisions of Sections 1 through 4 of this act of their obligation to provide the information and execute the citation or affidavit, as described in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this subsection.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1998.