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Check breath test accuracy before agreeing to a plea deal

Drunk driving charges can threaten to derail your life. A conviction can lead to jail time, fines, license suspension or revocation, and a hit to your reputation that can affect you for years to come. It can affect your ability to secure a job, housing, and get to work, school, and family events. The penalties are very real. But don’t let that frighten you into accepting the first plea bargain a prosecutor throws your way. Instead, consider carefully analyzing the evidence so that you can make a fully informed decision about your criminal defense.

For example, prosecutors often rely on breath test results in order to pressure accused individuals and secure convictions. After all, refusing to submit to a breath test can result in automatic license suspension. Yet, your breathalyzer test results might not be accurate enough to justify criminal charges, let alone a conviction. But is the State going to let you know that? Probably not.

The sad truth is that Breathalyzer test results can be wildly inaccurate, giving readings that may be off by as much as 50%. This could be the difference from driving while legally drunk and driving while legally sober. Additionally, breath test machines are only as reliable as the equipment being used. Far too often these devices are improperly calibrated, mishandled, and stored in a way that is against protocols. The same can be said for administration of breath tests. Officers are required to follow specific steps when administering them, and failure to do so could lead to inaccurate results.

Don’t let aggressive prosecutors frighten you into accepting unjustified penalties without first considering your options. You need to be realistic, of course, but there may be some very real and very powerful criminal defense options available to you. Therefore, if you want to be fully informed about your realistic options, then it might be time to reach out to a criminal defense attorney who is experienced in this area of the law.