WHAT SHOULD I DO IF POLICE ARE INVESTIGATING ME FOR A DUI?
Criminal Defense lawyers are sometimes put in difficult positions where they are limited in the kind of answers he or she can give to a question—this is one of those situations. Rather than provide a direct answer, we will attempt to provide some background of the process.
There are two kinds of breath demands police can make: (1) the “roadside test” or “screening demand” and (2) what is often referred to as the “breathalyzer demand” or the “intoxilyzer demand” or the “instrument demand”.
THE SCREENING DEMAND
As for (1), the screening demand is the demand that you provide a breath sample into a handheld screening device at the scene of the investigation. An officer is able to make this demand if he or she has “reasonable suspicion” to believe that you have any alcohol in your body which is a relatively easy test for an officer to meet. These devices usually give a “fail” reading if they determine that your blood alcohol concentration is at least 100mg of alcohol in 100 ml of blood. A fail therefore informs the officer that you are driving while over the legal limit of 80 mg of alcohol in 100 ml of blood which then gives the officer reasonable and probable grounds to arrest you for Over 80 and to demand that you provide a further breath sample into an approved instruction.
THE BREATHALYZER DEMAND
This is the demand that requires you to attend at the police station with the officer to provide samples of your breath. The tests are conducted by a breath technician using a machine that is an “approved instrument” under law for this kind of breath testing such as the Intoxilyzer 8000C. This instrument is intended to determine the exact blood alcohol of the accused and the results may be used at trial. At Bernstein Law Group we have access to experts that are able to analyze the data and raise triable issues or provide testimony as to the accuracy of the results.
SPEAK TO A LAWYER
You have the right to speak to your lawyer of choice before the instrument breath testing and you should always exercise that right. Your lawyer may be limited in the type of advice to provide you as they won’t know the entire case and circumstances, but a lawyer will be able to inform you of your legal rights and how you should exercise them. Our lawyers at Bernstein Law Group deal with these cases all of the time and will be happy to provide you with a free consultation if you are charged with Impaired Driving or Over 80.
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