A conviction for driving under the influence (DUI) can significantly limit your ability to drive and access employment and educational opportunities. If you or someone you know is facing an uncertain future because of this type of charge in Maryland, you may have legal cause to challenge the breathalyzer test results conducted by a police officer.
Use of breathalyzers
Breathalyzers are a commonly used tool by police officers to determine if someone is driving while intoxicated. And while in use in the criminal legal system for decades, their results are not always reliable. Challenging the field sobriety test results may help you avoid an unlawful prosecution.
Ways to challenge your breathalyzer test results
There are several ways to challenge your test results. Police officers must have training on how to conduct the test properly. If the police officer who gave you the test was not trained, you could challenge the DUI test results.
If administered during an illegal search, you and your attorney can try and have the breathalyzer test excluded from evidence. The police are only allowed to legally stop and search you if they believe that they have probable cause. In this case, probable cause would be evidence such as not following traffic laws. Additionally, once they have pulled you over, you need to have shown signs of having consumed too much alcohol, such as slurring your speech, bloodshot eyes, or the smell of alcohol in your car.
A lack of police officer testimony is also a good reason to challenge your test results. You have the constitutional right to confront your accuser. If the arresting officer does not show up to testify, you can ask the court not to hold the test results against you as reliable evidence.
Understanding the laws about breathalyzers is your best defense against a false DUI conviction. Challenging their findings in the court can help secure justice.