Quinton wants blood-alcohol test thrown out of evidence
by Michelle Babcock
August 09, 2014 12:25 AM | 5525 views | 0 0 comments | 26 26 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The man charged in the wedding day crash that killed his bride wants to prevent medical records that show his blood-alcohol level from being used at his trial, claiming the evidence was obtained and seized illegally, court records show.

Ryan Quinton, 28, of Jasper, was indicted on charges of homicide by vehicle in the first degree in the Dec. 29 car wreck that killed his bride as they drove away from their wedding reception, but his attorney filed a motion to suppress evidence “seized as the fruits of illegal searches.”

A test of Quinton’s blood after the wreck showed an alcohol level of 0.114 percent, more than the legal limit of 0.08, warrants show.

But Quinton’s attorney, Scoot Poole, filed a motion July 24 explaining his reasons for wanting particular evidence withheld from being used at the trial, including the results of a blood toxicology test and the medical records seized from the hospital where Quinton was taken after the wreck.

Poole said there will have to be a hearing on the motion to suppress the evidence before a decision can be made, and as of Friday, a hearing date had not been set, court documents show.

Poole said it is unknown whether or not Quinton was read implied consent documentation or whether or not a written consent form was signed.

“It is also unknown who was involved in and present for the blood draw, what protocols were followed for the blood draw, and whether or not chain of custody was maintained,” Poole wrote in the motion.

Poole said Quinton was “suffering from physical and emotional trauma” from the wreck and grieving the death of his wife, and was “unable to make a knowing and voluntary decision” about whether or not to consent to the blood draw.

The attorney continued to say there was not a “valid legal basis” for suspecting Quinton was under the influence of drugs or alcohol when the sample was taken.

“The blood sample was collected in violation of the procedures mandated by (Georgia Code),” Poole said, adding that the “chain of custody” was not maintained on the sample.

Poole said in the motion the search warrant used to obtain the samples and medical records from the hospital “failed to establish probably cause” to support the search warrant, and violated Quinton’s privacy.

“Defendant did not consent to the seizure of anything from the hospital regarding the treatment he received while a patient at Northside Hospital-Cherokee and maintains an ongoing privacy interest in any and all records of treatment and/or bodily substances taken from him by the said hospital for purposes of his medical care,” Poole wrote.

Poole requested the motion be heard before Quinton’s trial and not in the presence of a jury.

Quinton was indicted on three counts of vehicular homicide, although District Attorney Shannon Wallace clarified in June he can only be sentenced on one count. First degree vehicular homicide carries a maximum punishment of 15 years in prison.

Quinton’s trial is scheduled for the week of Aug. 18, but Poole said earlier this week he expects the trial to be delayed, explaining “there’s basically three pages of cases ahead of us.”

On the night of the wreck, Quinton and his bride were driving away from their wedding reception in Ball Ground when authorities say he lost control of the Pontiac Firebird he had been driving on Highway 5.

The car went down an embankment and ejected his wife Kali Quinton, 26, of Ball Ground. She died at the scene of the wreck.

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