Challenging your Breathalyzer Results
When you are pulled over on the suspicion of drunk driving, you may be asked to complete a field sobriety test and/or take a Breathalyzer test. If you are asked to take a Breathalyzer test or another type of test to determine your blood alcohol content (BAC), such as a blood or urine test, you are required to comply with the officer’s request. This is known as implied consent.
Because you are required to take a BAC test at the time of your arrest, you might assume that a reading of a BAC at or above 0.08 percent is an automatic conviction. This is not true. You can challenge the results of a Breathalyzer test and potentially avoid a conviction, retaining your driving privilege and avoiding the expensive fees and surcharges that accompany a DUI conviction. Below are a few examples of defenses you may use against a charge citing a Breathalyzer reading of 0.08 percent or higher. Whether a particular defense may be used depends on the unique circumstances of your case.
The Breathalyzer was not Properly Calibrated
Breathalyzer results are only accurate if the device was properly calibrated. If you were tested more than once and received different results, there is a chance that the machine was not calibrated correctly and therefore, did not provide accurate results. Usually, at least two samples are taken.
The Officer Did not Properly Administer the Breathalyzer Test
A Breathalyzer is an advanced piece of electronic equipment and to correctly administer one, an officer must be trained to do so. If the officer who administered the test was not certified to do so, the results may be deemed inadmissible. Similarly, the officer must be able to prove that the device was properly calibrated and maintained.
Food or Medication Altered your Test Results
Sometimes, compounds in food or medication can cause a Breathalyzer to record a higher BAC than you actually have. If there were witnesses present before you drove or in your car with you who can attest to this, you may be able to challenge your Breathalyzer results.
You were Tested After the Alcohol Absorbed into your Bloodstream
Alcohol does not impair an individual instantly. Alcohol needs time to absorb into the bloodstream and if a significant amount of time, approximately an hour or so, elapsed between your driving and your Breathalyzer test, you may be able to successfully argue that you were not yet impaired while you were driving.
Work with an Experienced Miami DUI Lawyer
If you have been arrested for DUI in Miami or the surrounding area, do not assume that you will be convicted and will have to accept the penalties. You can fight a DUI charge, even if your Breathalyzer showed that your BAC was above the legal limit when you were arrested. To learn more about challenging a DUI charge, contact our team of DUI defense lawyers at Ratzan & Faccidomo, LLC to set up your initial consultation in our office.