Rules are made to be followed, and when a deviation from an established practice is made, the results can be skewed. For instance, when you go to cook your Thanksgiving meal this year, you might end up with a dry bird or runny mashed potatoes if you fail to follow all of the baking instructions to the letter. The same is true in legal proceedings, and all parties to a lawsuit are expected to follow the rules applicable to their particular case in order to come to a result that does not run afoul of the statutes. When one side goes around the rules, it makes the case harder to dissect, and can lead the Court down the wrong road.
In a DUI case there are several rules that have to be followed, and one of those has to do with the breath test given to a driver to determine if a DUI charge can even be filed. In order to be charged with DUI, the officer on the scene has to have proof that you were driving while intoxicated, as that is defined by Florida law. In our state, a DUI is an instance of operating a motor vehicle during a time where your blood alcohol content (BAC) is .08% or more. In order to measure your BAC, a breath test can be administered. But before an officer can give you a breath test, you have to be observed for twenty minutes. If you are not placed under observation for this time, the results can vary as follows:
- The final test result can be considered invalid, and not used in your case.
- Without proof that your BAC was over the legal limit, the prosecution’s case quickly loses steam.
- Keeping out this key piece of evidence can help you to get the case dismissed, or the charges reduced.
The end result in your case will depend on what happened during your stop and subsequent arrest. It takes careful questioning of the arresting officer, and a thorough study of the responses given as those responses related to the specifics of your case. When discrepancies are found, they should be brought to the Court’s attention, and used as part of your defense. For more information about the observation period and what you need to do to establish whether the officer followed protocol in this regard, call us today.
For help with defending DUI charges, call our office to speak with a qualified criminal defense attorney. We help people charged with all sorts of crimes in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Call today to schedule an appointment.