Being charged with a DUI can be a life-altering experience, and the outcome of your case can greatly affect your future. One of the key pieces of evidence in a DUI case is the breathalyzer test result. However, these tests are not always accurate, and challenging the validity of the results can be crucial to your defense. In this blog post, we will discuss the top 5 factors that can invalidate breathalyzer results in Arkansas DUI cases and how a skilled criminal defense attorney can help you fight the charges.
1. Improper Calibration and Maintenance of the Breathalyzer Device
For breathalyzer results to be considered accurate and admissible in court, the device must be properly calibrated and maintained according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) guidelines. If the device is not calibrated correctly or has not been maintained as required, the results may be inaccurate and can be challenged by your attorney.
2. Operator Error in Administering the Test
Another factor that can lead to inaccurate breathalyzer results is operator error. The person administering the test must be properly trained and certified to do so. If the officer conducting the test did not follow the proper procedures, your attorney may be able to argue that the results are not reliable and should not be used as evidence against you.
3. Medical Conditions and Other Factors That Can Affect Breathalyzer Results
There are several medical conditions and other factors that can cause a false positive on a breathalyzer test. These include:
- Acid reflux or GERD
- Diabetes or hypoglycemia
- Fasting or low-carbohydrate diets
- Residual mouth alcohol from recent consumption of alcohol-containing products (e.g., mouthwash, cough syrup, etc.)
If you have a medical condition or other factor that could have affected the breathalyzer results, your attorney can use this information to challenge the validity of the test.
4. Inaccurate Breathalyzer Results Due to Environmental Factors
Environmental factors, such as temperature, humidity, and altitude, can also affect the accuracy of breathalyzer results. For example, research has shown that breathalyzer devices can produce false positives at high altitudes. If your test was administered in conditions that could have affected the accuracy of the results, your attorney may be able to use this information to challenge the evidence against you.
5. Violation of Your Rights During the DUI Stop and Arrest
If your rights were violated during the DUI stop and arrest, your attorney may be able to argue that any evidence obtained, including breathalyzer results, should be suppressed. Some examples of rights violations include:
- Lack of reasonable suspicion for the traffic stop
- Improper administration of field sobriety tests
- Failure to read you your Miranda rights
If any of these factors apply to your case, it is essential to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you challenge the breathalyzer results and fight the DUI charges.
At Norwood & Norwood, P.A., we have extensive experience in challenging breathalyzer results in Arkansas DUI cases. Our skilled team will thoroughly investigate your case, identify any factors that may have affected the accuracy of your breathalyzer test, and build a strong defense on your behalf. Contact us today for a free consultation and let us help you protect your rights and your future.