The statutory warning tells the person arrested that a refusal to provide a sample may be admissible in a subsequent prosecution. The form also notifies the accused of the different lengths of suspension, depending on whether the person refuses or takes the test. There is a separate paragraph that's specifically directed to persons younger than 21 years of age. The warning says:
If you are younger than 21 years of age and have any detectable amount of alcohol in your system, your license, permit, or privilege to operate a motor vehicle will be suspended or denied for not less than 60 days. However, if you submit to the taking of a specimen and an analysis of the specimen shows that you have an alcohol concentration of less than 0.08, you may be subject to criminal penalties less severe than those provided for under Chapter 49, Penal Code.By its nature, this warning is coercive since it explicitly informs the person if they take a breath test and the result is less than 0.08, they may still be subject to less severe criminal penalties than if they completely refuse to take the test. However, under the implied consent law, consent to the taking of a breath or blood sample must be voluntary.
For consent to be voluntary a person's decision must not be the result of physical or psychological pressure brought to bear by police officials. A clear reading of the DIC-24, as it relates to suspects under 21 years old, is coercive because the warning provides for less severe penalties only if the accused person agrees to provide a sample. In other words, the warning results in a person providing a sample "involuntarily." Consequently, these breath and blood test results should be attacked by DWI defense lawyers by motions to suppress evidence based on this psychological coercion. Call a qualified Bryan DWI lawyer for answers.