Denver Breath & Blood Test Defense

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When facing a DUI charge in Colorado, the prosecution's entire case against the defendant hinges on the strength of evidence; namely, that the defendant's BAC level was higher than the legal limit at the time of the traffic stop. There are two types of chemical tests used to determine a driver’s BAC level: a breath test and a blood test. If you have been arrested for drunk driving after failing either of these tests, it is important to understand that you may still have the chance to fight a criminal conviction.

Can I Refuse a BAC Test?

Under Colorado law, you are required to take a breath or blood test if you’ve been arrested for a DUI. The test must be administered within 2 hours of when you were last behind the wheel. By refusing to take the test, the state can suspend your license – 12 months for the first offense, 24 months for the second offense, and 36 months for the third offense.

Understanding the Breath Test

One of the most common forms of measuring blood alcohol concentration is the use of a device called a breathalyzer. The breathalyzer is able to gauge the amount of alcohol in the bloodstream through the air being exhaled. Although it is only one of the methods of measuring BAC, it is highly favored by police officers for the use of DUI stops. This is due to the usability and portability of the device, which is a small instrument, about the size of an old tape recorder.

The weakness of breath tests lies in the technology's science. When a prosecution's entire case is built upon the results of a breath test, your Denver DUI attorney has the ability to scrutinize possible factors that could contribute to a false or inaccurate reading.

These factors include:

  • The officer wasn’t properly trained on how to use the breathalyzer machine
  • The officer wasn’t properly trained on how to administer the test
  • The officer made a mistake when administering the test
  • The machine wasn’t calibrated correctly
  • Machine errors, defects, or malfunctions
  • Radio frequency interference

Information on Blood Tests

A blood test is conducted by drawing a sample of the driver’s blood, which is tested to determine the amount of ethanol alcohol in the body. Like a breath test, blood tests are not immune to inaccuracies and errors. Although blood tests are arguably more accurate than breath tests, there are still a number of factors that could cause the results of a blood test to be inaccurate, such as:

  • Contaminated testing equipment
  • Broken or defective testing equipment
  • Too much time elapsed between arrest and testing
  • Technician error

One thing to understand is that when it comes to blood tests, it is extremely difficult to track the chain of custody, as the tests are very extensive and require a lot of human involvement. Human error is not uncommon and can often be used as grounds to get the tests dismissed as proper evidence.

Defending Yourself Against DUI Charges

When you are facing something as severe as a criminal charge of a DUI, there is no room for anything less than your best effort. You need to have an attorney at your side with the skill and knowledge to assist you on your way to your desired result. By working with the right lawyer, you can get your questions answered about the DUI process, DUI penalties, multiple DUI offenses and more.

At The Law Office of Christopher H. Cessna, we understand the emotional, overwhelming nature of the case you are facing and are completely dedicated to giving you the proper legal support to protect your rights. Contact the firm at your earliest convenience to get started on a positive resolution.