New Supreme Court Decision Regarding Minnesota DWI Cases
Lawyers have always argued that breathalyzer tests and other field sobriety tests leave a marginal room for error, causing them to be an inaccurate calculation blood alcohol content (BAC) levels. A battle has raged on for the last six years over breathalyzer tests and the Minnesota Supreme Court just released its decision in June of 2012, that the overall accuracy of the breath test is not affected. The technology of these tests were usually deemed unreliable but the justices ruled in a split 4-3 decision ruling in the favor of the validity of DWI breath-testing results. In the past, many people who were pulled over in suspicion of drunk driving would choose to fight the results if the blood alcohol content came out to be over .08%. With this recent court ruling, if the Intoxilizer 5,000 EN shows intoxication of .08% or higher is permissible evidence in court against the defendant.
What could this mean for someone who was charged for a DWI months or years ago that is still in the process of fighting the results of the breathalyzer test? More than 4,000 pending Minnesota Criminal Defense cases will move forward in rulings and be sent back to the courts for individual litigation. Now that the test results are permitted, they are now deciding how much impact and weight it will carry as viable evidence in the case. Three justices however, still believe that there are critical errors in the mechanical software of the breathalyzer test and that juries should be made aware of these flaws. Under the law, it is a crime to refuse a blood test in the state of Minnesota, but drivers should now do their best to convince law enforcement officials to conduct a blood or urine test instead, which turns out to be almost 100% accurate in measuring breath alcohol content. Lawyers must utilize a more creative approach when defending against DWI/DUI charges. If this is the case for you, please do not hesitate to contact a Minneapolis criminal attorney today.