Allegations of driving under the influence (DUI) are different than many other crimes because people often assume that anyone arrested for a DUI must be guilty. The proliferation of chemical breath tests and the perceived accuracy of these tests has led to a cultural assumption that anyone charged with a DUI is likely guilty.
However, you know that you only had one drink at least 90 minutes before you got behind the wheel of your car. You felt utterly shocked to discover that you had failed the breath test when the officer administered it to you. You may have started questioning yourself, when it is the test result that you should question.
While you may feel like pleading guilty is the fastest and best way to resolve this issue, the truth is that you might have an opportunity to defend yourself.
Chemical breath testing isn’t as reliable as people assume
Chemical breath tests have come under increased scrutiny in recent years because of how easy it is for these testing units to produce inaccurate results. In some cases, the units don’t receive adequate maintenance or calibration. Other times, they need to update their software but the department using the devices fails to install those patches or updates.
There are jurisdictions in various states across the country where judges won’t even rely on chemical breath testing alone for a conviction anymore because the results have become increasingly subject to challenges in court.
Do you suspect that your chemical breath test was wrong?
If you have been the victim of an inaccurate breath test, you may feel as though you have no option but to plead guilty or face even worse consequences and personal humiliation by going to court. Asking the courts to look at the validity of the test could be a better option.
Talking about the situation that led to your arrest with an attorney familiar with DUI defense can give you an idea of what defense strategies might work for you. Challenging the evidence against you is one option, but there may be others as well. Rather than pleading guilty and throwing yourself on the mercy of the courts, fighting the charge and avoiding a criminal record altogether may be your best option.