Breath Testing

Methods for Obtaining A Test Under Ohio’s Implied Consent Law

July 28th, 2014

 

implied consent law

 

When you drive on Ohio’s roadways you are assumed to have consented to a search of your blood, breath, plasma or urine if you are arrested pursuant to the Ohio Drunk Driving statute, R.C. 4511.19(A) or R.C. 4511.19(B). Ohio Revised Code 4511.191(A)(2) is Ohio’s Implied Consent Law. It states, in pertinent part,

 

“Any person who operates a vehicle, streetcar, or trackless trolley upon a highway or any public or private property used by the public for vehicular travel or parking within this state or who is in physical control of a vehicle, streetcar, or trackless trolley shall be deemed to have given consent to a chemical test or tests of the person’s whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, or urine to determine the alcohol, drug of abuse, controlled substance, metabolite of a controlled substance, or combination content of the person’s whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, or urine if arrested for a violation of division (A) or (B) of section 4511.19 of the Revised Code, section 4511.194 of the Revised Code or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance, or a municipal OVI ordinance.”

 

The first of three methods officer’s use to obtain a test is submission by a defendant. This is a typical scenario wherein a person is observed driving and arrested for OVI. At the station the officer reads the warnings on the SR-2255 form and requests that the defendant take a chemical test. The statutory authority for this method of obtaining a test is set forth at R.C. 4511.19(A)(2). It is necessary that a defendant be placed under arrest prior to the officer’s request to submit.

 

Section 4511.191(A)(4) applies the implied consent statute to persons who are dead or unconscious at the time a blood breath or urine sample is requested. It states,

 

“Any person who is dead or unconscious, or who otherwise is in a condition rendering the person incapable of refusal, shall be deemed to have consented as provided in division (A)(2) of this section, and the test or tests may be administered, subject to sections 313.12 to 313.16 of the Revised Code.”

 

Issues over this method of obtaining a test are often invoked in serious accident cases. Questions of fact about whether the person was semi-conscious, fully conscious or able to give consent are common. Due to the unusual circumstances of this type of case, an arrest is not necessary prior to the chemical test.

 

The third method for obtaining a chemical test under the implied consent provisions of Ohio law is the controversial forced blood draw.  Ohio adopted a “no refusal” forced blood draw statue at R.C. 4511.191, which states, “if the person refuses to take a chemical test the officer may employ whatever reasonable means are necessary to ensure that the person submits to a chemical test of the person’s whole blood or blood serum or plasma.” [emphasis added]. Obviously, the McNeeley decision places this law in jeopardy.  When a person refuses to voluntarily submit to a chemical test for BAC, if time permits, a warrant should be obtained.  In State v. Hollis, 2013-Ohio-2586, the Fifth Appellate District was faced with an appeal of a decision from the Richland County Common Pleas Court. The case was the first forced blood draw decision following the United States Supreme Court ruling in Missouri v. McNeeley, which held “that in drunk-driving investigations, the natural dissipation of alcohol in the bloodstream does not constitute an exigency in every case sufficient to justify conducting a blood test without a warrant.  The decision of the court used the previous rules for exigent circumstancesas set forth in Schmerber v. California and does not address or rely upon the McNeeley ruling.  Instead, the court (relying on Schmerber) finds that exigent circumstances existed justifying the blood draw. Defendant was constructively arrested at the hospital after wrecking his car and likely being under the influence. The blood draw at the hospital was reasonable and with exigent circumstances. The court credits that it would have taken “hours” to get a warrant.

 

 

 

Attorney Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  “All I do is DUI defense.”

To learn more about Ohio’s Implied Consent law contact me, or check these city-specific sites at the following links:

FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburg, Huber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville

 

 

 

The Ohio OVI Breath Test – How To Fight And Win

June 30th, 2014

OVI breath testYou may think that any person who takes an OVI breath test and blows above Ohio’s .08 legal limit is guilty of OVI.  This is not the case.

Ohio employs a device called the Intoxilyzer 8000.  This device has many problems in its operation.  In fact, after a lengthy hearing on the Intoxilyzer 8000, a judge in Marietta ruled that the machine was not reliable [Story HERE].  Prosecutors hide behind a 1984 Ohio Supreme Court decision that said because the machines were officially certified by the state, they cannot be challenged by expert witnesses. Until this ruling is overturned we have to rely on other issues… and we do.

There are several ways to challenge an OVI breath test that involve operational issues.  Operational issues that may be used as defenses in your OVI case include:

  • Human error
  • Environmental factors
  • A breath test may not accurately represent your true Blood Alcohol Content (BAC)
  • Your mouth alcohol may be measured higher than your true breath alcohol level
  • Amount of time between your arrest and breath test
  • The breath test device may be improperly maintained

Did you know that your breathing pattern can significantly alter the concentration of alcohol on your evidential OVI breath test?  According to scientific research, “[t]he subject’s test manner of breathing just prior to providing breath for analysis can significantly alter the concentration of alcohol in the resulting exhalation.” (Jones, 1982, Schoknecht, 1989) as cited in Physiological Aspecs of Breath-Alcohol Measurement, Alcohol Drugs & Driving Vol. 6, No. 2, A.W. Jones.  Hyperventilation “…lowers the breath alcohol concentration by as much as 20% compared with a single moderate inhalation and forced exhalation used as control tests.” Id. (Jones, 1982).  Whereas, “holding breath for a short time (20 seconds) before exhalation increases the alcohol concentration in exhaled air by 15%. Id. (Jones, 1982).

The protocol for the Intoxilyzer 8000 in Ohio requires that you produce merely 1.1 liters of breath, less than the amount of air required to fill a two liter pop bottle.  The average adult can exhale between three and four liters of air.  If you are unlucky enough to be tested on this machine, the police will urge you to keep blowing your entire breath into the machine. However, such a long breath will artificially increase the apparent amount of alcohol in your breath by skewing the sample toward your “deep lung air,” where the alcohol is more highly concentrated. If you only blow only the required 1.1 liters, you will give an adequate sample, which may be up to 30% less than the sample that the police want you to give.

At Dayton DUI we constantly write on issues affecting an Ohio OVI breath test.  I invite you to check out these related articles:

It is my hope that even the most vehement advocate of tough DUI laws would allow an open debate on the scientific methodology of convicting a person in court.  If you are willing to fight to keep truth out of the courtroom, then you have drifted so far from the principles of fairness as to become blind to what our system of justice should be.  I call on MADD, the Century Council and all other advocates for tough DUI laws to join me in having a fair fight over the science and protecting our fragile and vulnerable system of justice.

Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  “All I do is DUI defense.” 

To schedule a visit about your OVI breath test or to learn more, check these city-specific sites at the following links:

FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburgHuber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville

Problems With The Intoxilyzer 8000: You Blew Too Much!

June 16th, 2014

intoxilyzer 8000The Intoxilyzer 8000 measures how much breath you provide by something called a ‘pressure transducer.’ Instead of directly measuring the volume of your breath by a pressure switch, like the old Intoxilyzer 5000 did, the 8000 indirectly measures breath. Not only is it needlessly complicated, it simply doesn’t work! The flow sensor systems in Florida’s Intoxilyzer 8000′s are so unreliable that FDLE ordered that police STOP KEEPING RECORDS of the system in monthly checks. In 2011, a system-wide check showed that 40% of the machines in Florida couldn’t accurately measure breath volume! (Source). As of this writing, the author knows of no testing in Ohio to determine if this is a problem.  In fact, recent court decisions reveal that precious little (if any) testing has been done by the Ohio Department of Health prior to the implementation of the machine in Ohio.

The protocol for the Intoxilyzer 8000 in Ohio requires that you produce merely 1.1 liters of breath, less than the amount of air required to fill a two liter pop bottle.  The average adult can exhale between three and four liters of air.  If you are unlucky enough to be tested on this machine, the police will urge you to keep blowing your entire breath into the machine. However, such a long breath will artificially increase the apparent amount of alcohol in your breath by skewing the sample toward your “deep lung air,” where the alcohol is more highly concentrated. If you only blow only the required 1.1 liters, you will give an adequate sample, which may be up to 30% less than the sample that the police want you to give. 

The Intoxilyzer 8000 is Ohio’s breath testing device in DUI cases.  One of the major flaws of the machine is that its testing protocol can result in inflated tests. The more you blow, the higher it goes.

Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  “All I do is DUI defense.”

 Find more Intoxilyzer 8000 information check these city-specific sites at the following links:

FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburgSpringboro,Huber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville

Laser DUI Detectors Being Developed

June 13th, 2014

laser duiLaser DUI detectors are on the way! Imagine driving down the street and having a police laser passively check your car for alcohol vapors.  According to the Huffington Post, scientists at the Military University of Technology in Warsaw, successfully tested the device by aiming its laser at a car passing by at a distance of up to 20 meters. The car’s interior had been filled with alcohol vapor, simulating the exhalations of a drinker inside the car.

If this technology is successful, the laser DUI devices could be employed much like red-light cameras or used by stationary police like radar speed devices are currently being used.  The machine could also be used to take a picture of the car to alert police to the driver’s description and/or to see if anyone else (who may be have been drinking) is in the car.  Scientists are sure that later modifications can be made to the technology that will allow detection of other chemical compounds like marijuana.

A paper describing the device was published online in the Journal of Applied Remote Sensing on May 19, 2014.

Laser DUI Attorney Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  “All I do is DUI defense.”

For more info on laser DUI deteection check these city-specific sites at the following links:

FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburgSpringboroHuber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville

Are You Fat? Old? A Woman? Then The DUI Laws Are Biased Against You

June 5th, 2014

DUI lawsDid you know that the DUI laws are inherently biased against most of us?

Alcohol loves water and will move into spaces where water is the most prevalent.  Fatty portions of the body have a low water content and absorb little of the alcohol, while muscular portions of the body have a high water content and absorb much alcohol.  As it is carried to all parts of the body by the blood, the alcohol distributes itself in proportion to the water content of the various parts of the body.  It is the presumed relationship between the amount of alcohol in the blood at a given time and the amount of alcohol which will be present in the breath which is it he basis for the theory that we can test breath and infer a BAC result.

So we can conclude that the fatter the person, the more alcohol will remain in the bloodstream which will result in a higher BAC result.  The better a person’s physical fitness level, the more alcohol will be taken up by the rest of the body, the less which will be left in the blood, which results in a lower BAC.  This may upset the traditional assumption that the bigger the person (i.e. the size of the container) the more alcohol that the person can consume and the lower the BAC.  The “lean” to “fat” ratio, however, is an important factor.

Women have, on average, a higher percentage of body fat.  Older people have, on average, a higher percentage of body fat.  Does this mean that the breath tests are biased against older people and women.  Based on the science the answer is, yes!  The higher the percentage of body fat, the more alcohol will stay in the bloodstream, the higher the BAC which will result from the alcohol consumed, as opposed to the same amount consumed by a lean, muscular person of the same weight.  Do the DUI laws take this into account – NO! It is up to your attorney to provide the jury with a context to understand how applying the law is unfair to you.

Attorney Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio and fighting for fairness in the DUI laws and their application.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  “All I do is DUI defense.”

For more on Ohio DUI laws check these city-specific sites at the following links:
FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburgSpringboro,Huber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville