Maryland DUI Blood Tests
Blood Tests and Drunk Driving
In most cases, police use breath tests to determine a driver’s breath alcohol content. Blood tests are more expensive for the state to administer.
However, in the case of a serious car crash where tests cannot be conducted at the scene or because of other unusual circumstances, a blood test may be performed later on. The officer may speak with the injured driver and determine whether or not they are drunk by slurred speech, bloodshot eyes and other cues.
Am I required to consent to a blood test?
You are not required to submit to a blood test unless the accident resulted in death or a life-threatening injury, in which case you must. You have the right to speak with an attorney before providing any blood sample.
If you do consent to a blood test, a hospital employee will draw blood to test for the presence of alcohol. In Maryland, this test is analyzed by the state’s laboratory. The results of the blood test can be used in a court case against the driver. If you do not consent to a blood test, usually hospital records are used, which do not have any legal standing on their own. In court, an expert has to explain the results, which can make the state’s case somewhat more difficult to prove.
Are blood tests accurate?
A state blood test for alcohol must be administered within two hours of driving to be deemed admissible in court. Any blood tests have to be completed by a trained person using the right equipment. Additionally, the technician or chemist who analyzed the results of the test can be compelled to testify, and the accused has the right to set up an independent blood test.
Blood is considered the most reliable test compared to breath and urine tests, but human error and other factors can affect its reliability. As with any test for alcohol, there are many things that can go wrong with a blood test. Hospital test results have been found to increase the level of alcohol in the system by as much as 25 percent. Results can be contaminated, not stored properly or not taken properly. The bottom line is that they’re fallible just like other tests.
Should I Hire a Defense Lawyer?
There are many variables that need to be considered when preparing a persuasive drunk driving defense. Attorney Andrew Alpert has many years of experience arguing DUI cases in Maryland. He has received specific training in the defense of DUI cases and related issues, is certified to own and operate breath testing instruments and is a certified breath alcohol technician. He has taught numerous DUI courses, conducted lectures state DUI laws and related cases.
For more information on how Andrew Alpert and his team can help defend you against Maryland DUI charges, contact Alpert Schreyer, LLC today at (301) 262-7005 or (866) 444-6363.