Supreme Court: DUI test results should not have been suppressed
COLUMBIA, S.C. The state Supreme Court says a lower court will have to review evidence of prejudice in the administration of a breath-test in a drunken-driving case.
In a ruling released today, the high court says a trial judge erred in supressing the results of Ronald Landon’s breath test in 2002 without finding that the testing was unfair. Justices upheld Circuit Judge G. Thomas Cooper’s 2005 decision that Richland County authorities were failed to keep adequate records of maintenance and testing on the DataMaster machines used to administer the tests.Under state law, both local agencies and the State Law Enforcement Division are responsible for keeping records on the state’s 158 DataMasters.Defense lawyers say the machines routinely break down and give false blood-alcohol readings. Shoddy record-keeping, they argued, gives the impression the machines are more reliable than they are.
You are presumed innocent. The breath test is presumed accurate. You have the right to remain silent but if you don’t hire a lawyer and a breath test expert – you lose. Figure that one out. Could it be a Constitutional exception for DUI cases.