The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its decision in Francen v. Colorado Department of Revenue, Division of Motor Vehicles on July 5, 2012.
Revocation of Driver’s License—Alcohol—Reasonable Suspicion—Initial Stop—Express Consent Statute—Exclusionary Rule.
Respondent Colorado Department of Revenue (Department) appealed the trial court’s order reversing its revocation order concerning petitioner Tom Francen. The judgment was reversed and the case was remanded to the district court for reinstatement of the Department’s order revoking Francen’s driver’s license.
The Department revoked Francen’s driver’s license based on a determination that he had driven a motor vehicle with a legally excessive breath alcohol content. The district court reversed the revocation order, finding that the initial stop of his vehicle by police was not supported by reasonable suspicion.
The Department argued that the district court erred in reversing the revocation order because the police officer’s initial contact with Francen was unlawful. The express consent statute no longer provides that an arrest is a prerequisite to a request for chemical testing. Therefore, the legality of the initial contact between a driver and police is not relevant in a civil revocation proceeding, and the Department should not apply the exclusionary rule in civil revocation proceedings.
Summary and full case available here.