The chemical evidence gathered by police officers is often the crux of a criminal case when the state of Alabama charges someone with a driving under the influence (DUI) offense. There could be traffic camera or police cruiser video footage of someone driving poorly prior to a traffic stop, but often chemical evidence plays a critical role in establishing that someone broke the law.
You might have swerved to miss a squirrel in the road, not because you were under the influence. If the chemical breath test that you performed indicated that you were over the legal limit, there are three ways that you could convince the courts to exclude that evidence from your trial.
Challenge the traffic stop
Every driver has protection from unnecessary searches and unfair law enforcement activity. You shouldn’t have to worry about the cops targeting you because you went to a concert or a party.
A police officer needs to have probable cause to suspect a traffic infraction or other criminal offense to conduct a traffic stop. If an officer admitted when they first pulled you over that they had no real grounds for doing so, you could challenge the stop and all the evidence the officer gathered.
Challenge the accuracy of the specific testing unit
Chemical breath tests are intricate scientific devices. Police departments have to carefully maintain these devices and properly calibrate them frequently to ensure that they returned accurate readings. Sometimes, there are even software updates that will impact how accurate a device’s readings actually are. Gaps in maintenance and calibration records can help you challenge the accuracy of the particular testing unit utilized during your traffic stop.
Challenge the accuracy of chemical breath testing in general
Although people put a lot of faith in breath tests, there are many reasons that these devices return false positives and inaccurate readings. The issue is widespread enough that there are judges who will not hear cases without evidence beyond the chemical test to prove impairment.
Challenging the evidence against you is just one possible defense strategy, and you should consider all of your options when fighting back against a pending DUI charge in Alabama.