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What are the evidentiary requirements during a DUI investigation?

On Behalf of | Apr 1, 2022 | Criminal Defense

For Rhode Island drivers who are arrested for driving under the influence, the potential consequences can be concerning. In addition to the possibility of a driver’s license suspension, fines, jail time and community service, it can also create a negative impact on a person’s judgment and damage their professional and educational future. Formulating a strong defense is crucial. Part of that defense should include understanding the basics of how the evidence was gathered. If there was a misstep or outright error, this could help to reduce the charges or secure an acquittal.

Understanding the conditions for accruing admissible evidence for DUI

According to the law, there are fundamental requirements for evidence to be admissible. A person who is charged with DUI will have a certain amount of alcohol in their system or there will be a presence of intoxicating drugs found via blood test. When the sample is taken, the person must have consented to it. If the person refuses, any test will be inadmissible unless the person decides to testify. When the test is complete, there must be a “true copy” of the report hand delivered to the person where they took the test or mailed within 72 hours. If it was a chemical test, the true copy must be sent within 30 days after the test was taken.

There are basic rules to administering the test and state-provided equipment must be used. If the arrest was the result of a breath test, the equipment must have been checked to ensure accuracy within 30 days before the test was given. The operator of the machine must have been certified and qualified within one full year of the test. The person who was arrested should have been informed that they had the right to have an additional chemical test. If this offer was not made, the initial evidence will be inadmissible.

Questioning the evidence can be a key part of a DUI defense

When people are confronted with DUI charges, part of a criminal defense is naturally based on disproving the allegations. In addition, it can be effective to call the entire investigation into question. Perhaps the traffic stop was unjustified or there was a procedural violation at some point. These evidentiary requirements must be followed. Since a DUI conviction can cause so many challenges in a person’s life regardless of their age and situation, it is vital to know all the available strategies to fight the charges. Having experienced assistance can help to try and reach a positive result.