Were you required to take a DUI breath test in Dayton, Ohio? If so, you have likely been arrested for operating a vehicle under the influence. That means you need an experienced DUI lawyer on your side.
The Dayton DUI / OVI lawyers at Suhre & Associates are highly qualified to represent you after you fail a DUI breath test. We have more than a century of combined legal experience to help build your defense.
If you’ve been arrested for OVI, take control of the situation by hiring our aggressive DUI defense lawyers to fight back. The team at Suhre & Associates knows how to fight against failed DUI breath tests in Dayton. Contact us right away for your free consultation, call us at (937) 531-0435.
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How Can Our Criminal Defense Lawyers Can Help with a DUI / OVI Charge?
Do not fall into the trap of thinking your case will go away on its own. The state of Ohio takes driving under the influence seriously, and won’t rest until they have you behind bars.
Our founding attorney, Joe Suhre, was a police officer for five years before going to law school and becoming a defense lawyer. 20+ years later he is an award-winning DUI defense lawyer with countless trial victories under his belt.
When you hire our Dayton criminal defense lawyers, we’ll:
- Conduct an independent investigation into your case
- Analyze all relevant evidence in your case
- Look for deficiencies that could render your DUI breath test invalid
- Negotiate with prosecutors to get your charges reduced or dropped
- Present and explain all of your legal options
- Aggressively defend you in court
We’ve been successful in saving countless clients their freedom. We work day and night to fight the state’s case against you. Call our Dayton, OH law office today to let us get started fighting for you. Initial consultations are free.
Are DUI / OVI Breath Tests Reliable?
DUI breath tests in Dayton are used by law enforcement each and every day during DUI / OVI investigations. Police and prosecutors rely heavily on these devices to detect drunk drivers. However, their reliance is often misplaced. Good defense lawyers understand that breath tests have many problems that can lead to unreliable test results.
Some of the problems with DUI breath tests include:
- The presence of residual alcohol left in the mouth
- Improper machine calibration
- Proper breathing technique not used
- Lack of training using the device
- The device may confuse other substances with alcohol
- Machines not properly cared for and maintained
All of these factors can contribute to an unreliable blood alcohol content (BAC) reading from the breath test. At Suhre & Associates, we understand how to uncover problems in the administration of breath tests and show the unreliability of the BAC results to the jury.
Breath tests have many different names, and the subject can be confusing if you aren’t familiar with all of them. The different names for breath tests include:
- Preliminary Breath Test
- Portable Breath Test
- Evidentiary Breath Test
No matter which type of breath test you took, we can help. Our Dayton DUI defense attorneys know how to find errors in DUI investigations, including OVI breath test administration. DUI cases are serious, and you need a serious law firm with experience and aggression looking out for your best interest.
Are DUI / OVI Breath Tests Admissible in Court in Ohio?
Breathalyzer, Preliminary Breath Test, and Portable Breath Test all typically refer to the same thing – a pre-arrest, roadside breath test. Officers administer these tests to gather more evidence of alcohol impairment in order to have enough suspicion, i.e. probable cause, to make a DUI arrest.
These pre-arrest tests are important factors in determining whether the police officer made a lawful arrest. However, these tests are not admissible in court as evidence that you were impaired or driving under the influence.
On the other hand, an evidentiary breath test is performed only after a DUI / OVI arrest, back at the police station. Evidentiary breath tests are performed with machines approved by the State of Ohio. These machines are not portable, and they are generally considered more reliable than the roadside breathalyzers. Evidentiary breath test BAC results are admissible against you at trial.
The state of Ohio has approved only the following machines for evidentiary breath tests admissible in court:
- BAC DataMaster, BAC DataMaster K, BAC DataMaster cdm
- Intoxilyzer model 5000 series 66, 68 and 68 EN
- Intoxilyzer model 8000 (OH-5)
Police typically use a preliminary or portable breath test on the roadside to get probable cause to make a DUI arrest. After the arrest, they then choose between an evidentiary breath test back at the station, or a blood test for alcohol performed at a hospital.
Blood test results are considered more reliable than evidentiary breath test results, because even the approved machines are subject to the same unreliabilities discussed in the previous section.
Do You Have to Take A DUI Breath Test in Dayton?
In Dayton Ohio, you have the right to refuse to take a preliminary breath test prior to arrest. However, once you are placed under arrest, you are required to submit to an evidentiary breath, blood, or urine test.
This is known as the law of “Implied Consent.” Under this law, all drivers in the state of Ohio are deemed to have “consented” to an evidentiary breath test simply by driving on the roads of the state.
Under implied consent, if you refuse to take a breath, blood, or urine test after a lawful arrest you can face serious penalties including automatic driver’s license suspension for a minimum of one year, and a maximum of five years, depending on your prior record.
A refusal is also an aggravating factor that can greatly increase a sentence on an OWI (operating while impaired). Typically, a refusal in a DUI case doubles the mandatory minimum jail time.
Additionally, if you refuse to consent to a breath or other test after arrest, the prosecutor is allowed to use the refusal against you in court as evidence of guilt.
Even if you do refuse to take a breath test after an arrest, you will most likely still end up submitting to a breath, blood, or urine test. The police officer is allowed to force you to submit to the test by obtaining a search warrant from a judge for your breath, blood, or urine. In extreme circumstances, the police can even force you to submit to testing by “whatever reasonable means are necessary.”
Essentially, the state of Ohio legally mandates that you submit to breath testing after an arrest. If you have questions about this, it is best to consult with your Dayton DUI defense attorney at Suhre & Associates.
How Can You Defend Against DUI / OVI Charges in Ohio?
The penalties for a DUI in Dayton Ohio are extremely serious. At Suhre & Associates, we know how scary it is for you to be caught up in the system. We understand that good people get caught up in bad situations. This is why we’ve made OVI defense our life’s work.
Every case involves unique allegations and facts, so no two cases can be defended the exact same way.
Some common strategies to DUI defense that may be relevant to your case include:
- Arguing that police made an illegal traffic stop
- Challenging whether police had reasonable suspicion to conduct field sobriety tests
- Fighting the arrest as unlawful for not having probable cause
- Trying to have incriminating statements obtained in violation of your Miranda rights thrown out of court
- Challenging the reliability of field sobriety tests and chemical evidence
If you have bad breath, blood, or urine test results showing an illegal BAC, your lawyer will usually file motions to suppress the test results. A suppression motion is a legal tool allowing the court to throw out evidence obtained through constitutional violations – typically the Fourth Amendment. If that fails, your attorney should challenge the reliability of the tests themselves.
Sometimes people think they are completely guilty just because they were over the legal limit on a test. They think they should just plead guilty to get it over with. However, this simply isn’t true.
If you hire an aggressive OVI attorney, there are many defense tactics that can be used to try to fight the allegations against you. DUI cases are complex and offer an experienced lawyer many angles to attack the evidence against you.
What Are the Penalties for DUI in Ohio?
It depends. If you are convicted for a DUI, the sentence in every case is different based on your criminal record, the judge, and the presence of mitigating or aggravating circumstances, such as BAC level, breath test refusal, and dangerous driving.
Additionally, the penalties increase sharply based on the number of OVI convictions you have. You will need to consult with your criminal defense lawyer to determine what kind of penalties you are facing in your unique situation.
Get Help if You’re Facing Charges After a DUI Breath Test in Dayton
After taking a DUI breath test in Dayton, Ohio, you are probably left feeling scared and alone. When you hire Suhre & Associates to represent you, we put our decades of collective experience to work fighting for you.
No piece of evidence is too small to be analyzed. No police action will go overlooked. Our team will carefully scrutinize your DUI from every possible angle to ensure we can present a full defense.
Criminal defense is always an uphill battle, so you need experienced and aggressive legal counsel fighting for your freedom and reputation. We offer free initial consultations – so call today and let us get started fighting for you.