Illinois v. Batchelder - 463 U.S. 1112 (1983)
U.S. Supreme Court
Illinois v. Batchelder, 463 U.S. 1112 (1983)
Illinois v. Batchelder
Decided July 6, 1983
463 U.S. 1112
Under Illinois' implied consent statute, if a driver, arrested for driving while intoxicated, refuses to take a breath analysis test, the arresting officer must file with the clerk of the appropriate circuit court an affidavit that includes the statement that the officer had "reasonable cause to believe the person was driving the motor vehicle . . . while under the influence of intoxicating liquor." The clerk must then notify the arrestee that his license will be suspended unless he requests a hearing within a specified time. Respondent refused to take a breath analysis test after he was arrested for driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor, and the arresting officer filed an affidavit that included the assertion that, at the time of the arrest, he had "reasonable grounds to believe that said person was driving a motor vehicle in this State while under the influence of intoxicating liquor." Respondent exercised his statutory right to a hearing before suspension of his license. At the hearing, the judge found that the officer's affidavit did not comply with the statute, and entered an order denying the State's request for suspension of respondent's license. The Illinois Appellate Court, although concluding that the affidavit literally complied with the statute's requirements, held that the affidavit was insufficient under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments, and that the statute would be constitutional only if it required an arresting officer to set out in his affidavit the underlying circumstances which provided him with a reasonable belief that the arrestee was driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor.
Held: Under the test set forth in Mathews v. Eldridge, 424 U. S. 319, 424 U. S. 335, the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment does not require an arresting officer, in enforcing Illinois' implied consent statute, to recite in his affidavit the specific evidentiary matters constituting the underlying circumstances which provided him with a reasonable belief that the arrestee was driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor. The driver's right to a hearing before he may be deprived of his license for failing to submit to a breath analysis test accords him all of the process that the Federal Constitution assures. Cf. Mackey v. Montrym, 443 U. S. 1.
Certiorari granted; 107 Ill.App.3d 81, 437 N.E.2d 364, reversed and remanded.