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OC DUI Blood Testing Defenses & Details You Should Know About
OC DUI BLOOD TESTING DEFENSES
The science behind blood testing is a complicated area of study and should be well-understood before attempting to use it in the defense of a driving under the influence (DUI) charge. An Orange County DUI Lawyer who is experienced in blood testing can use this knowledge to show a jury you were not above the legal limit at the time of driving and/or that you were impaired.
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INCORRECT CALIBRATORS IN BLOOD TESTING
Noteworthy to Blood Test Defenses in Orange County, it was revealed on or about November 1, 2013 that the Orange County Crime Laboratory (O.C. Crime Lab) discovered that an incorrect calibrator was used in one of the two blood test devices used to calculate the average blood alcohol levels in Orange County DUI cases from May 29, 2013 to October 9, 2013.
The incorrect calibrator caused blood test reports to report a value that was higher than the true blood alcohol level, which in some cases resulted in the person's true blood alcohol level being below the legal limit. The use of the incorrect calibrator was not discovered until an audit of the facility was performed. The impact of the audit demonstrates the need for Orange County DUI Defense Attorneys to be vigilant in filing motions for discovery.
The incorrect calibrator issue did not end there, however, as it was revealed on or about November 21, 2013 that the Orange County Crime Laboratory discovered that an incorrect calibrator was used in one of the two blood test devices used to calculate the average blood alcohol levels in Orange County DUI cases between December 2012 to May 2013, the period of time immediately preceding the first discovered calibrator error. This time, however, the incorrect calibrator caused theblood test reports to report a value that was lower than the true blood alcohol level; thus, the complete opposite direction from the first discovered error.
All in all, these errors resulted in a reduced "confidence" level in the reported blood alcohol concentrations for the above-referenced time periods, and perhaps other time periods that have not yet been discovered. The discovery of the second error prompted a request by the Orange County Board of Supervisors for the California Department of Health to review the Orange County Crime Laboratory's policies, procedures and case standards and to present its findings to elected officials in order to help ensure public confidence in the system; however, this did not excuse the fact that there is literally a whole year's worth of scientific data that is flawed.
The incorrect calibrator issue demonstrates that not even blood testing is perfect. While there is a smaller margin of error in blood testing, it is not infallible, as the element of "human error" is present in any form of blood alcohol testing. An experienced DUI Defense Attorney can help find these errors and use them to defend you in against a DUI charge in Orange County or anywhere in Southern California.
The Orange County Crime Laboratory implemented new policies and procedures subsequent to the discovery of the incorrect calibrator issues in accordance with Section 6.5.13 of the Forensic Alcohol Section Manual, entitled: "Standards In-Service Procedure".
To learn more about OC DUI blood testing defenses, such as incorrect calibrators, contact Peter F. Iocona, Attorney at Law.