Breath test results are common evidence in DUI cases. Pennsylvania is an implied consent state, which means that you are obligated to consent to a desktop breath test or blood analysis test to determine your blood alcohol content. Sometimes, officers also administer a portable breath test at the scene.
If a breath test shows you over the legal limit, it is important to know how to contest it.
Has the device been calibrated?
Maintenance and calibration are essential for accurate results from a breath test. Your attorney can petition the maintenance and calibration records for the device in question to ensure that it was properly maintained. Any discrepancy in the calibration records can call the accuracy of the test into question.
Was the test administered correctly?
Breath test accuracy depends upon the proper administration of the test as well. The footage from the test administration can determine if the administering officer followed proper procedures during the test.
Are you taking any medications?
Certain medications can alter the results of a breath test. Products such as asthma medication, cough syrups, cold medications and mouthwashes can alter the results of a breath test. In addition, diabetes and certain gastrointestinal conditions can interfere with a breath test result.
Failing a breath test is not guaranteed to lead to a conviction. Understanding the elements that alter a breath test can help you defend against DUI charges. Consider these factors as you decide how to contest your charges in court and look for the necessary evidence to support your case.