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How Do Field, Blood and Breathalyzer Tests Work?

How Do Field, Blood and Breathalyzer Tests Work?

How Do Field, Blood and Breathalyzer Tests Work?

Facing a DWI charge can be daunting. With the potential for significant fines, penalties and even jail time on the line, it’s imperative that you not only understand the charges against you but also build the most robust defense possible. I’m Attorney Scott A. Hamblin, and my mission is to navigate you through this challenging time. Common tests used in DWI charges, such as field sobriety, blood and breathalyzer tests, can sometimes yield inaccurate results. Recognizing these inaccuracies can be crucial to your defense. Let me guide you through how these tests work and how their results can sometimes work in your favor.

The Initial Stop and BAC Basics

When law enforcement suspects a driver of operating a vehicle under the influence, various tests are utilized to determine the driver’s Blood Alcohol Content (BAC). The legal threshold for a DUI charge in Missouri is a BAC of .08 percent. However, it’s critical to understand that while these tests aim for accuracy, they are not infallible.

Portable Breath Tests

In the early stages of a traffic stop, officers may use portable breath testing devices to estimate a driver’s BAC. These handheld devices provide immediate results but are known for their lack of reliability compared to more sophisticated equipment found in police stations. It’s important to note that results from these preliminary tests are often not admissible in court. They serve primarily as a guideline for officers to decide whether further testing is warranted.

Chemical Tests After Arrest

Following an arrest for a DWI violation, you’re likely to undergo more rigorous testing. This could involve blood or other chemical tests, which are considered more accurate and whose results are typically admissible in court proceedings. Some states employ cutting-edge technology for these tests, and refusing them can lead to severe consequences, such as license suspension. Additionally, techniques like retrograde extrapolation may be used to estimate your BAC at the time of the stop rather than hours later, providing a more accurate depiction of your state during the incident.

Breath Samples

For breathalyzer tests conducted at a police station, the process involves collecting a breath sample that the machine analyzes to print out a BAC result. It’s your right to view these results immediately. However, if the device wasn’t operated by someone properly trained or if there were any procedural errors, the results might be deemed inadmissible in court. Ensuring that all procedures are correctly followed is paramount for the integrity of these tests.

Why Legal Representation is Crucial

If you find yourself facing DWI charges, it might seem like an uphill battle. However, with the right legal representation, it’s possible to challenge many aspects of your arrest and the evidence against you. From questioning the accuracy of the tests used to scrutinize the arresting officer’s testimony, a skilled attorney can identify weaknesses in the prosecution’s case. My goal is not just to defend you but to aggressively pursue every avenue to protect your rights, potentially leading to reduced penalties or even dismissal of charges.

Call For a Consultation to Discuss Your DWI Charges

Understanding how field, blood and breathalyzer tests work is the first step in building a solid defense against DWI charges. While these tests are designed to measure impairment accurately, they are not beyond error. As Attorney Scott A. Hamblin, I am committed to providing you with the legal skills and compassionate representation you need during this challenging time. If you’ve been pulled over for a DWI, don’t hesitate to seek professional legal support. Together, we can navigate the complexities of your case and strive for the best possible outcome.

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