The Tests Police May Use to Arrest You for DUI
Gary Lee Hosey Jr., 24, was arrested by Las Vegas police for DUI after crashing his vehicle into a bus stop, killing four people. While driving at a high speed, Hosey lost control of the car and plunged into the bus stop. Police took blood samples within two hours of the crash, which allegedly indicated a blood-alcohol level above the legal limit of 0.08 percent. Hosey accepted responsibility for the deaths, but disputed the results of the blood test. He asserted that the accident was due to his speeding and not alcohol consumption. The court considered Hosey’s claim and ordered an independent laboratory to review the blood samples.
If you are stopped by the police, you could be asked to perform a number of tests to help the police discover if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Under Nevada law, you are assumed to consent to testing whenever you get behind the wheel. If this is your first offense, you can opt for a breath test instead of a blood test. Breath tests can often be unreliable, and you may be asked to provide two or three breath samples to achieve consistent readings. If the discrepancy between readings is greater than 0.02 percent after three tests, the fourth test should be a blood test. A lawyer can dispute the findings of a breath test for any number of reasons, such as the police using faulty equipment or the breath test operator not having a current license.
The results of a blood test can only be used as valid evidence if the test is administered correctly. For example, only certain professionals, such as phlebotomists and registered nurses, are approved to take the actual blood sample. There are also stringent rules for the police to follow regarding the preservation of samples.
In addition to taking a breath or blood test, an officer may ask you to perform field sobriety tests such as standing on one leg. These tests are designed to assess your fitness to drive without resorting to more expensive testing methods. However, the accuracy of the results of field sobriety tests is highly questionable. An officer should request that you perform approved field sobriety tests. Any other test is not considered valid evidence for a DUI conviction.
For more information on challenging the DUI tests police carry out, contact an experienced Nevada DUI attorney immediately.