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Contempt affirmed for man suspected of drunken driving

March 31, 2014

A man who authorities said refused to comply with a court-ordered blood draw for suspicion of drunken driving was rightfully found in contempt of court, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Monday.

The panel affirmed an indirect contempt of court conviction under I.C. 34-47-3-3 in Jeffrey Metzger v. State of Indiana, 02A03-1307-CR-295. Metzger was arrested in December 2012 on suspicion of operating while intoxicated, but he refused a breath test, so Allen County officials obtained a warrant for a blood draw.

When authorities informed Metzger that a warrant had been obtained, the record says he grabbed a chair and began moving toward a deputy, who ordered Metzger to sit down. When he didn’t do so, the deputy took him to the ground and handcuffed him, according to the record.

The panel rejected Metzger’s claim that because the deputy intended to call off the blood draw before a nurse arrived that he did not willfully resist, hinder or delay the execution of the warrant.

“Based on Metzger’s uncooperative actions, it can be reasonably inferred that Metzger had no intent to comply with the trial court’s order to submit to a blood draw,” Judge Patricia Riley wrote for the panel.

“As Metzger’s act was clearly directed against the authority of the court and hindered the execution of the trial court’s warrant, the trial court properly held Metzger in contempt,” Riley wrote.
 
 
 

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