Importance of Breathalyzers in DUI Court Cases
If you have been involved in a drunk driving incident where the officer asked you to pull over your vehicle, then you are probably familiar with breathalyzers. The officer will ask you to take a breathalyzer test because this is the fastest and most accurate way to test the Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) in your body. In the United States, it is illegal to drive a vehicle with a BAC of 0.08% or more, so when you sit in your car and drive it anywhere with a BAC of 0.08 or more and whether you are aware of your alcohol content or not, you would still put yourself at the risk of getting caught and convicted with a DUI.
Breathalyzers are used to test your alcohol content and if you refuse to take this test, the officer can arrest you, bring you to the police station for further questioning and may even cause a loss of your driver's license. Breathalyzers can actually prove to be very important in the court, so read on.
Basically, a breathalyzer consists of a small plastic tube that is connected to a device. You breathe into the plastic tube and the device measures the content of alcohol in your bloodstream and lungs. If you submit to a breathalyzer test and the alcohol content in your body is zero or minimal, then you're probably safe but if your alcohol content is 0.08 or more, then you'd probably be arrested and convicted of a DUI (Driving Under the Influence).
For commercial drivers, the threshold for BAC level is set to 0.04 and anything above this will cause a DUI arrest. Similarly, for drivers under the age of 21 years, any level of BAC can lead to a DUI charge. This is why a breathalyzer is such an important tool for law enforcement, the result of this device can decide you fate for the next many months.
These days, personal breathalyzers are also becoming common; people purchase their very own breathalyzers and this way, they can check their BAC before driving and can actually prevent many possible DUI related accidents and offenses. Often, people who had drank alcohol at a party or somewhere else would avoid getting behind the wheel because they know that if caught, they'd probably have to take the breathalyzer test and the fear of getting arrested can also prevent potential drunk drivers from getting into trouble.
Another hesitation on the part of drivers who drink is that the results of breathalyzers are always accurate and this result acts as evidence in court when you have to present your case in front of the judge and at such a place, a scientific fact such as the result of a breathalyzer is usually hard to contradict.
However, many argue that the breathalyzers effective life is not very long; even people with personal breathalyzers have complained that their results become inaccurate after a few months of use. This inaccuracy can be pretty harmful for the law enforcement authority as well as for drivers because it can label an innocent sober driver with DUI if his or her BAC comes out to be more than it actually is.
Such inaccuracies have been reported in the past because the breathalyzer was old or tampered with. People who have been convicted with a DUI on the basis of an inaccurate breathalyzer result can always disprove this result in court provided they have a professional and experienced DUI lawyer to represent them in court. For DUI offenders, disproving the results of a breathalyzer is usually the biggest challenge of their case. Also, many juries who are aware of the non-reliability of breathalyzer tests will also dismiss them if they are suspected to be ineffective.
Remember that if you refuse to have a breathalyzer test taken, then you will face a suspension of your driver's license that can cause greater problems for you. In any case, you need to talk to your DUI attorney about breathalyzers and their role in your DUI case; be informed about breathalyzers and their reliability when you drive at all and especially when you have to fight your DUI case in court. You attorney can also help you successfully disprove the breathalyzer test results as evidence in your case in front of the court that can greatly help reduce the penalties that would otherwise have been imposed on you. Talk to a lawyer today and get help immediately.