Fear of the Breathalyzer

If there is a word that strikes fear into the hearts of drivers all over Rancho Cucamonga it is the word: "breathalyzer". Once the word is uttered it conjures up visions of blowing into a tube and hearing that elongated beep. Then there is that horrible twisting in your stomach as the police officer studies the readout display; and as the officer turns to you, you hold your breath in anticipation, and then he announces your fate, "You're over the limit. You're under arrest."

What every Rancho Cucamonga driver does not know is that there is a laundry list of guidelines that the administrating officer must adhere to while performing this seemingly simple test. The California Code of Regulations Title 17 Section 1215 is the governing statute for all things relating to the dreaded "breathalyzer."

DUI Defense Attorney Kirk M. Tarman has been defending clients with DUI charges for fourteen years and knows all of the way in which to have breathalyzer test results thrown out. This does not mean that his client has to hire a fancy expert witness who will get on the stand and give a lecture about the particular type of breathalyzer used. Also this does not mean that his client's money has to be spent on expensive scientific tests administered in laboratories by men in lab coats. Attorney Tarman need only submit enough evidence to rebut the presumption of reliability.

In one instance, a man was able to have the results of the breathalyzer thrown out because the administering officer did not wait the required 15 minutes after the man spit out his chewing gum before administering the test. Roze v. DMV, 141 Cal. App. 4th 1176.

In another case, the test was deemed unreliable because there was enough mouth alcohol present to throw off the equipment and result in a false reading. Robertson v. Zolin, 44 Cal. App. 4th 147.

The fact is that officers have to observe and adhere to a copious amount of guidelines while performing the breathalyzer exam and any deviation from those guidelines will render the test invalid. It can be anything from failure of the officer to establish the calibration of the unit to the inability of the officer to administer the test properly, etc. The possibilities go on and on.

So, when the police officer, sheriff, CHP officer etc. makes it seem as though your fate is sealed because the breathalyzer said so, have faith in Rancho Cucamonga DUI Defense Attorney Kirk M. Tarman.

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