Whether you don’t have a clue what a roadside breathalyzer is or you recently found out WAY more than you wanted to know, today’s entry in the MRD Law Glossary will provide useful information that can save you a lot of trouble.
In each MRD Law Glossary article, we explain all the details and answer common questions, so you have the information you need to make a smart choice. If you have further questions or you need an experienced defense attorney by your side, reach out to the team at MRD Lawyers.
What Is a Roadside Breathalyzer?
A roadside breathalyzer is a type of tool used by police officers to detect whether a driver is under the influence of alcohol. But do they really work? And are they really accurate? These are critical questions that can be the difference between a serious criminal conviction and a successful defense.
There are actually two kinds of roadside breathalyzers, and the team at MRD Lawyers wants you to know that there are critical differences. An experienced DWI defense attorney can litigate the results of a roadside breathalyzer and possibly even have the whole test thrown out of court. Read on to learn more about the two types of roadside breathalyzers.
Roadside Breathalyzer – Preliminary Breath Test (PBT)
You’ve probably seen this version of the roadside breathalyzer on TV (but hopefully not in person!). It’s a small box, about the size of a pack of cigarettes, with a straw coming out of the top, and the officer holds it up and says, “Blow into this”. By law, the numerical results of this type of roadside breathalyzer are not admissible in court. However, they can be used to confirm the existence of some amount of alcohol on your breath, and that is admissible in court. About 95% of DWI stops will use this test method.
MRD Lawyers Critical Point: You can refuse to take a PBT roadside breathalyzer, but if the officer suspects you have been drinking they will almost certainly arrest you anyway. However, refusing this test does not violate the Implied Consent Law in Missouri. If you violate the Implied Consent Law, your license can be revoked for one year.
Roadside Breathalyzer – Blood Alcohol Content Test (BAC)
This type of roadside breathalyzer is even more serious. This type of breathalyzer is carried in a briefcase sized box with a tube that you breathe into. They are calibrated to be accurate, so the numerical results from the BAC roadside breathalyzer are admissible in court. The BAC tests are not as common as the PBT tests, but they are being used more and more in Missouri.
MRD Lawyers Critical Point: You can refuse to take a BAC roadside breathalyzer, but if the officer suspects you have been drinking they will almost certainly arrest you anyway. Refusing this test does violate the Implied Consent Law in Missouri, so if you refuse it your license can be revoked for one year.
Exceptional DWI Defense from MRD Lawyers
If you have been given a roadside breathalyzer and gotten yourself in trouble with the law, you need to get an experienced DWI defense attorney on your side. These are serious cases and every detail matters, because a good attorney can use those details to successfully defend you in court. If you are dealing with a DWI charge, contact the experienced legal team at MRD Lawyers right away so we can document every detail of your case.
A DWI charge is expensive, embarrassing, and time-consuming. It’s a problem you don’t need. So contact MRD Lawyers in Springfield, Missouri, and let us take the problem off your hands and provide you with the right solution.