Sheriff’s Office Employee Blows .09 After DUI Arrest
A Polk County sheriff’s office detention deputy has been charged with DUI after blowing a .09. You may know that is a tenth of a percentage point above the legal limit. In conducting these tests, there is a margin of error, and that margin of error must be accounted for by prosecutors or else they will likely be raised by defense attorneys. In this case, a defense attorney would have a hard time defending this particular client even though her BAC was barely above the legal limit. In the following article, we’ll discuss per se DUI cases and those that don’t meet the criteria for per se convictions.
Per se DUI convictions
If the prosecution can show evidence that your BAC was above .08, then they have proven everything they need to prove for a DUI conviction. The chemical test acts as de facto proof against the defendant. The defendant can raise objections to the evidence, how it was acquired, and whether or not the tests were performed properly, but if the prosecution can show evidence that you were operating a car with a BAC above .08, then they have all the proof they need.
Evidence in DUI prosecutions
Chemical tests such as blood and breath tests are often presented as evidence against DUI defendants. But it’s harder for the prosecution to prove a per se case if the defendant’s BAC is so close to the legal limit. The defense can raise the argument that the defendant’s BAC could have been as low as .07 if the test has a .02 margin of error (which is typical among breath tests). In this case, it won’t matter whether or not the .02 margin of error is an element of the prosecution.
Non per se DUI convictions (Impairment DUIs)
While chemical tests for marijuana usage do exist, it is unclear how useful they are for determining if an individual is high at the time they are driving the vehicle. This is because unlike other drugs, marijuana is fat-soluble and is therefore detectible for up to a month after the last use. So how do police prove a marijuana user is too impaired to drive? Well, they use evidence from the stop.
In the case mentioned above, the arresting officer watched the woman run her vehicle off the road and up a media before almost landing in oncoming traffic. They found multiple empty alcohol beverage cans in the vehicle including one that was half full, optimistically. So, the state relies on evidence of impairment to make their case against the driver. In this case, there is evidence of impairment as the deputy ran her vehicle off the road, and evidence of alcohol consumption after leaving open beverages within arm’s reach.
In other words, even though the chemical test shows that the driver might have been impaired, the driver’s driving leaves one with little doubt that she was functionally able to operate a motor vehicle at the time.
Talk to an Orlando DUI Attorney Today
If you’ve been arrested for DUI in Orlando, then you need to begin thinking about your defense to the charges immediately. Don’t plead guilty just to get the situation over with. An attorney can help reduce your obligation to the state. Call the Florida DUI defense attorneys at FL DUI Group today!