Challenging Breath Tests in a DUI Prosecution
In a driving under the influence case, the prosecution relies heavily on the results of the chemical tests performed on the defendant after he or she has been arrested for suspicion of driving under the influence. One such test is known as the “breath test”. There are actually two different tests that may be administered in the course of a DUI investigation. One is known as the preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test and this is typically performed at the scene of the arrest. The officer is supposed to use this test in order to help determine whether there is sufficient probable cause to arrest the person for driving under the influence. The other breath test is typically given at the police station or jail once someone has been arrested for suspicion of DUI. This test is known as the evidentiary breath test.
These tests involve using machines that are designed to analyze the content of alcohol in a person’s breath and then convert that into a percentage of alcohol in the person’s bloodstream. Many people believe that this number is always accurate but that is not always the case. In fact, there are several problems with the way these tests are administered and the way the machines arrive at their results that may be challenged by the defense in a DUI prosecution.