More Faulty Breath Tests

by baronedefensefirm on June 10, 2010

DUI Breath Testing

Breath test results are the most common forms of evidence used to convict Michigan drivers accused of drunk driving.  There is an expectation and a trust that because these breath testing machines, in Michigan called “DataMasters,” are properly maintained by the police.  Other states have shown that this trust is often misplaced.

This time the culprit is the District of Columbia, where D.C. Attorney General Peter Nickles said the breath testing machines were improperly adjusted by city police.

Mary Pat Flaherty, Washington Post Staff Writer (Thursday, June 10, 2010) has indicated that “nearly 400 people were convicted of driving while intoxicated in the District since fall 2008 based on inaccurate results from breath test machines, and half of them went to jail, city officials said Wednesday.”

Furthermore, D.C. Attorney General Peter Nickles said that the jailed defendants generally served at least five days.

The report indicates that all machines tested where wrong, usually by 20%.  A lawsuit has been filed by those wrongfully convicted.

But the District isn’t the only state to have such problems.  Here is a list of prior articles dealing with the same issues:

If you’ve been arrested for DUI in Michigan, and believe the test results are flawed, then you should seek out a top DUI lawyer to assist you with your case.

Get a FREE confidential CASE EVALUATION on your Michigan OWI/OWVI/DUI by calling (248) 306-9159, or filling out this consultation request form. Call now, there’s no obligation!


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Patrick T. Barone is the author on two books on DUI defense including the well respected two volume treatise Defending Drinking Drivers (James Publishing), and The DUI Book – A Citizen’s Guide to Understanding DUI Litigation in America. He is also the author of a monthly DUI defense column for the Criminal Defense Newsletter, published by Michigan’s State Appellate Defender’s Office. Mr. Barone is an adjunct professor at the Thomas M. Cooley Law School where he teaches Drunk Driving Law and Practice. He is also on the faculty of the Criminal Defense Attorney’s of Michigan’s Trial Lawyer’s College where he provides trial skills training to Michigan’s criminal defense practitioners. Mr. Barone lectures nationally on various DUI defense topics, and he has appeared in newspapers, on television and on radio as a drunk driving defense expert. Mr. Barone has been certified as an instructor and practitioner of the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests and has also attended a 24-hour certification course at National Patent Analytical Corporation (the manufacturer of the DataMaster) and has thereby been deemed competent by the manufacturer to operate, perform essential diagnostic verifications and calibration checks on the DataMaster. Mr. Barone is a Sustaining Member of College for DUI Defense. Mr. Barone is the principal and founding member of The Barone Defense Firm, whose practice is limited exclusively to defending drinking drivers. The Firm is headquartered in Birmingham, Michigan.

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