Tampa Attorney on the DUI Breath Test – How do I fight the high blow over .08?

Many people believe that if they blew over the legal limit of .08 that they will not be able to avoid a DUI conviction in Tampa, Hillsborough County, FL. However, many of these cases are reduced to reckless driving prior to trial. A DUI case with a blow over the legal limit of 0.08 can be reduced to reckless driving for any number of reasons that all center around one fact:

The DUI breath test machine is not always accurate.

Law enforcement agencies throughout the State of Florida all use a breath test machine called the Intoxilyzer 8000 which is manufactured in Kentucky. The company that manufactures the machine, called CMI, Inc., wants to keep the source code of the machine a secret. DUI Attorneys throughout Florida and the rest of the country have argued that keeping the source code a secret violates the defendant’s right to due process and to contest the evidence against him.

Fighting the DUI breath test over .08

Previous rulings have centered on the fact that the State of Florida did not possess or own the source code and had no ability to release it to a expert for the defense. A big problem for the State of Florida occurred when it was discovered that the State of Florida contracted with CMI to develop a special version of the source code called the Florida version. Florida DUI Attorneys were able to locate a copy of the purchase agreement which explicitly stated what we all knew all along – Florida owns the “source code” or at least the rights to the Florida version of the source code.

In many recent breath test cases, our Tampa DUI attorneys have hired an expert witness who wants to view the source code of the machine to find out why the machine malfunctions in certain circumstances, and to see what “patches” have been added to fix common problems observed in the machines. Other DUI attorneys throughout the State of Florida have won motions to throw out the breath test results unless and until the State of Florida releases the source code to a expert witness retained by the defense.

Those motions have been successfully litigated by other DUI defense attorneys in Manatee County, Sarasota County, Orange County, Seminole County, and Lake County, FL. Many Tampa DUI Defense Attorneys believe it will only be a matter of time before the judges in Hillsborough County, FL, make similar rulings. Read more about the issues in excluding the breath test results that our attorneys have raised in Tampa, Hillsborough County, FL: Fighting the Tampa DUI Breath Test.

The prosecutors many be terrified that if the motions here are successful, then every attorney in town will then file a similar motions effectively rendering all breath test results inadmissible in Tampa, FL. Prosecutors could still bring those cases to trial just without any ability to talk about the breath test results obtained. In order to avoid that adverse ruling, in some jurisdictions the prosecutors are willing to drop many of theses cases to reckless driving in order to avoid the hearing on the issue entirely.

Many of the rulings from other judges in other counties that have excluded the breath test results are currently on appeal. The best result would be for these lower court rulings to be upheld so that more transparency would exist with the way the machines are manufactured, calibrated, repaired, and maintained.


If you blew over the legal limit after being arrested for DUI in Tampa, Hillsborough County, FL, then call a find out more about how the DUI attorneys in Tampa, FL, at the Sammis Law Firm use the  and also preserve evidence that can be used to fight the criminal case.Tampa DUI Attorney for breath test cases.

The attorneys at the Sammis Law Firm take a scholarly approach to fighting the breath test results. Call 813-250-0500 to talk with an attorney today. Contact a Tampa DUI Attorney at the Sammis Law Firm to discuss ways that you can fights your drunk driving case involving a high breath alcohol content test result in Tampa or Plant City for Hillsborough County, FL.

Links Related Contesting DUI Cases involve a Breath Test Readings

Expert Testimony from Harley R. Myler on Source Code for the Intoxilyzer 8000 – Read the request made to C.M.I., their response, and an affidavit from an expert witness explaining why disclosure of the source code is relevant and necessary to contest the breath test readings.

Guilty By Machine: The Problem of Source Code Discovery in Florida DUI Prosecutions – A must read for anyone interest in the current litigation. Article published in the Florida Law Review by Charles Short.

Breath Test 20 Minute Observation Rule – Find out more about why the DUI arresting officer is required to sit and observe the defendant for at least 20 minutes prior to administering the breath test.

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