Information on Ohio’s Portable Breath Test
If a law enforcement officer suspects that you have been driving while under the influence (DUI) or operating a vehicle while impaired (OVI), he or she may want to administer a portable breath test, or tests such as field sobriety tests. If you are stopped and suspected of DUI or OVI, the officer may try to get you to agree to take a field sobriety test or a portable breath test. Regardless of what the law enforcement official may try to tell you, these tests are not mandatory.
There are many problems associated with the portable breath test. First and foremost, these portable machines may or may not be properly calibrated to give accurate results. In fact, the machine may read that you are intoxicated when in fact you are not. Also, there are nosafe guards in portable breath tests to account for naturally occurring mouth alcohol. There is also very likely no maintenance or calibration done to these machines. There are no required quality assurance standards that these machines need to meet.
The law enforcement officer may use these inaccurate results as probable cause to arrest you for DUI or OVI. The results from the portable breath test are not admissible in court at a trial, because of their potential inaccuracy. Portable breath test results are only admissible at a suppression hearing for determining if the officer had probable cause for making an arrest.
If portable breath tests are so seemingly useless, why do law enforcement officials continue to use them? It could be that as an intimidation tool, these portable breath tests do the job. Even if you don’t think you are driving under the influence and you submit to the portable breath test, then get the news you have failed the test, you are now at the mercy of the DUI system.
If you are, in fact, arrested as a result of taking a portable breath test, you may be required to take a chemical test – either blood, breath, or urine. At this point, following arrest, if you refuse to take a test you will have your driver’s license suspended. If you refuse to take the portable breath test, you may still be arrested. Once arrested, if the chemical tests show you are not over the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) level, and you did not take the portable breath test, you may have cause to claim false arrest.
Do You Need a Reliable OVI/DUI Defense Attorney Columbus, Ohio?
If you’re facing DUI or OVI charges in Columbus, Ohio, you need an experienced attorney well-versed in sobriety tests who will review your case and create a strategy to either win the case or mitigate the potential damage to your record. This will protect your driving record, your license, and possibly even your livelihood. The skilled, trusted legal representation at Probst Law Office offers the help you need to be sure you have the best representation possible in fighting DUI/OVI charges. Get the experience that you need and deserve when you hire Michael Probst as your attorney. Contact Michael today for your free consultation, or call now at 614-349-4349.