Appeals court rules in favor of drunken driver - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Appeals court rules in favor of drunken driver

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A Wisconsin appeals court has ruled in favor of a woman who was stopped for drunken driving after a police officer smelled alcohol on her breath.

The District 2 Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday that merely smelling alcohol on a driver's breath before they get behind the wheel falls short of reasonable suspicion that the driver is drunk.

The court notes that while it is illegal in the state to drive drunk, it is not illegal to have had a drink before driving.

The case involved a Pewaukee police officer who saw Brittany Meye get into her car at a gas station around 3:30 a.m. on Jan. 23, 2009. The officer smelled a strong odor of alcohol and arrested her for drunken driving before she even drove the car.

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