Florida Criminal Defense and DUI Defense Blog

19Jun, 12

The Government may claim that the Mouth Alcohol Detector NEVER fails, but we showed them to be just plain wrong.

The Intoxilyzer 8000 comes equipped with a device called a mouth alcohol detector. It is a necessary safeguard, because if mouth alcohol were blown into the machine and not detected, the machine would report a grossly exaggerated breath alcohol level. If the mouth alcohol detector senses mouth alcohol, it is programmed to abort the test and report the problem.

Last week, at a trial in Fort Pierce, the arresting officer testified that, in her experience, the mouth alcohol detector on the Intoxilyzer 8000 has never ever failed. The prosecution later presented an FDLE inspector who testified as an expert that the mouth alcohol detector on the Intoxilyzer 8000 has never ever failed.

On cross-examination, I asked the expert if he could explain to the jury why, if his claims were true, the head of the Washington State Police had written an article entitled, “The Inadequacy of Instrumental “Mouth Alcohol” Detection Systems in Forensic Breath Alcohol Measurement” He couldn’t.

I asked the expert if he could explain to the jury why, if his claims were true, did the International Journal of Drug Testing publish a peer-reviewed article by Professor C. Dennis Simpson, and doctor students Jessica A. Kerby and Scott E. Kerby, of the University of Western Michigan, entitled, “Effects of Mouth Alcohol on Breath Alcohol Results”. He couldn’t.

Never, ever fails?

Yeah, right.

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Attorney Mike Kessler
Written by: Attorney Mike Kessler

Attorney Kessler has been practicing criminal law in Florida for 30 years. He is recognized as is a leading authority on drunk-driving defense as well as a founding member of the Saint Lucie County Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and co-author of The DUI Book: Florida Edition, the definitive resource on DUI in Florida.

To speak with Mike, call 772-466-4900 or click here for a free consultation.

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