Possible flaws include if the officer didn’t have reasonable suspicion to stop the vehicle, didn’t have reasonable suspicion to launch into a DUI investigation, didn’t have probable cause to arrest the person, or didn’t have probable cause to request a blood sample.
Other possibilities are if the officer didn’t properly request a sample of the person’s blood by reading the admonitions, the officer did not get a proper warrant, the officer did not properly serve the warrant, did not properly draw the blood, the officer did not have the credentials to draw the blood, or the officer did not observe the chemicals in the blood vials prior to the blood draw.
If the officer did not invert the blood vials after the blood draw in order to ensure that the chemicals that were in the vials were properly mixed, or the officer did not properly process the blood vials, that is another flaw. They are supposed to package them up, label them, ensure that they are safely packaged within a box and properly stored.
If the blood is not properly handled by the lab, if it’s not properly tested, if the machine was not working properly, if the machine’s results’ were not correct or reliable, or if the lab itself was not accredited, those can also be problems we could use to help a case. There are a number of issues concerning blood draws in a DUI case.
What Would You Advise Someone Hesitant to Fight a Blood Draw Case?
They don’t really know what the blood test results are because it takes so long to get the blood test results. All they know is that blood was taken, especially when we’re dealing with drugs and medications. Depending on the half-life of the drugs and medications, it’s possible that even if the person thinks that drugs or medications may show up in their system, by the time that the test occurs, nothing really shows up or it’s below threshold limits.
It is possible to challenge the blood test. Certain attorneys are very good at explaining to the jury why they should not accept the blood test results, which is difficult to do because they are taking a complicated science and trying to explain it to jurors who usually don’t have a scientific or legal background.
The blood test results are not the be-all, end-all. It is possible to challenge blood test results. There can always be something wrong with the machinery or with the process. In some cases, it’s definitely worth challenging. In others, it may not be worth taking the case all the way to trial just to try to challenge the breath or blood test.
What Are Some Things You Ask a Client In A Blood Draw Case?
Usually I want to know if they had consented to the blood draw, if the officer had to get a warrant, how many times they were stuck with a needle, whether there were any problems with the blood draw such as vials breaking or blood spilling out. Those are the main issues. It’s also important to know where the blood draw took place and whether they were placed in a restraint chair. Was there blood drawn on the side of the road, was it drawn in the police station, was it drawn by a nurse, by a phlebotomist, by an officer, or was it drawn by the arresting officer?
How was the blood requested? Did the officer ask the person for their consent, did the officer read what is referred to as the admonitions, or did the officer basically order the person to provide their arm because a blood draw was going to be done? There are a lot of factors with the blood. It’s not necessarily just a matter of, “Was your blood taken? What’s the amount?”
It’s the process. State law does require that officers jump through certain hoops in requesting a blood test. If an officer doesn’t follow those requirements, that can lead to blood tests results being suppressed.
What is The Most Difficult Aspect of a Blood Draw Case?
It’s probably the science itself, because it is such a complicated subject and the prosecution brings in a scientist to attempt to explain it.
If the defense attempts to bring in a scientist or attempts to argue to the jury that they should not understand the science, jurors get quite bored. They don’t want to hear about the science, they don’t want to sit there for hours listening about science, they didn’t like being in science class in school. It is not uncommon for jurors to simply listen to the scientist and wait for them to say a blood alcohol content number and then say, “I’m just going to rely on that” and just zone out everything that’s said because it’s too complicated, too much science, and they don’t want to think about it.
What Type of Attorney Should I Hire For a Blood Draw Case?
Basically, do your research, find the ones that focus on DUI defense. Find the ones that have gone to trial that know the proper terms, ones that have the experience and this is a complicated subject; DUIs in and of themselves are complicated. Your average criminal defense lawyer or civil lawyer or bankruptcy lawyer is not going to understand how to properly represent someone in a DUI case.
There are only a handful of attorneys in the State of Arizona that truly know what they are doing on DUI cases—probably 200 in the entire state that are true DUI lawyers that know what they are doing and maybe only 40 of them only focus on DUI defense. Research is key, finding ones that solely focus on DUI defense can be extremely beneficial to the case itself.
For more information on Flaws in a Blood Draw, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling 480-900-0384 today.