Sunday, November 29, 2009

Police did not give Tiger Woods a breath test to determine if alcohol
was a factor in his single-car accident early Friday morning, according
to The Orlando Sentinel
. Officers responding to the
scene had no reason to suspect Woods was under the influence of
alcohol, Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Kim Montes told the Sentinel. Woods was not given a breath test, nor was his blood or urine tested.
Troopers need probable cause that someone is under the influence of
alcohol or drugs to demand such tests, and they had none, Montes said.
Such probable cause could include finding liquor bottles in a car or
smelling alcohol on someone's breath.
Kissimmee (Fla.) defense lawyer Don Waggoner said Saturday that troopers must
arrest someone before they test for alcohol or drug intoxication. They
cannot draw blood unless they can't get a breath or urine sample, and
they can't take those unless they suspect intoxication, he said.
"If there's no reason for them to believe he's under the influence of
alcohol, then they have no probable cause," Waggoner said. "People have
accidents all the time, and they aren't under the influence of alcohol."

In a written statement, Montes described how state troopers were turned
away for the third straight day when attempting to interview Woods
about the accident Sunday afternoon. "The troopers
went to the house to see if they could speak with Mr. Woods," Montes said. "Mr. Woods'
attorney was present and told investigators that Mr. Woods was unavailable for
an interview. Mr. Woods' attorney provided the troopers with Mr.
Woods' driver’s license information, registration and current proof
of insurance as required by Florida Law. The crash investigation is
ongoing and charges are pending."

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