Call Toll-Free 800-300-2300

Faulty DUI test can be used as part of a defense

When a driver in California is arrested for driving under the influence, oftentimes one of the foundational pieces of evidence that is used is the DUI test. However, the test itself is not infallible and, if there is a problem with the testing device, then it can call the evidence into question and help with an acquittal. Those who have been placed under arrest for DUI must understand the serious nature of the allegations, that there are harsh penalties and the potential for long-term consequences.

According to a recent report, in Long Beach, law enforcement officials were using a DUI screening device that was not working properly for longer than a month after it had been declared unreliable by a technician. The mistake is said to be due to an oversight. The department says that it was a mistake and that corrective strategies have been implemented. The issue was found after a local councilwoman was placed under arrest for being mildly impaired while driving. The test registered a blood-alcohol level of .06. It was later found that the device was malfunctioning.

The incident with the councilwoman occurred in early-June, but the machine was said to be unusable about one month earlier. However, it was left in a place where officers could still take it and use it without knowing there were problems with it. The machine had displayed an error message. Once that was cleared, they could not get a baseline reading, therefore it should not have been used again. The test - a breath test - is used if the officer believes that the person has had enough to drink to warrant an arrest. After they are brought to the police station, they will be given tests that are deemed to be of greater accuracy. A second woman was also arrested using the same device. She pleaded guilty.

Although the breath test device is not the final determinative factor in whether a person was under the influence or not, if one was used when it is not working properly a person could be placed under arrest and face charges when he or she did not reach the BAC level to be considered under the influence. It is in situations such as this that it is essential to have legal assistance from a qualified criminal defense attorney to examine the entire case and see if there was a mistake with the testing devices or some other procedural or tactical error that the arresting officer made to nullify the arrest.

Source:, "Long Beach police say they discovered DUI test was faulty after using it on councilwoman," Jeremiah Dobruck, Nov. 13, 2017

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Call Toll-Free 1-800-300-2300
Email Us For A Response

Don't Wait To Get The Help You Need Get Started Now

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Our Offices

Long Beach Office
301 E. Ocean Blvd.
Ste. 1700
Long Beach, CA 90802-8812

Toll Free: 800-300-2300
Phone: 562-485-9376
Fax: 562-624-1178
Long Beach Law Office Map

Costa Mesa Office
600 Anton Blvd. 11th Floor
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Toll Free: 800-300-2300
Phone: 562-485-9376
Fax: 562-624-1178
Costa Mesa Law Office Map