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Can I challenge a blood test?

Whether through the use of blood or breath, the legitimacy of testing has often been called into question. The accuracy of the results, the efficiency of the apparatus itself and the training of the law enforcement officer have all been scrutinized.

On the surface, it would seem that chemical testing on an individual's blood is iron-clad. Upon a positive result, law enforcement has now built a strong case proving that a driver was operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Fortunately, there are ways to challenge a blood test.

Typically, there are three ways an experienced attorney can challenge the results of a chemical test.

  • Challenge the individual who administered the test. Whether challenging training methods, steps taken during the testing or the administer's general competency, examining the human element in testing is typically the first step in criminal defense.
  • Challenge the equipment used. This sensitive equipment must be cleaned, stored properly and calibrated between each use. If the equipment is not properly cared for, the results can be inaccurate.
  • Challenge the chain of custody. It is a phrase often used in police procedurals on television or in movies, but the chain of custody represents an accurate recording of all of the people who have come into contact with evidence. A blood sample, for example, changes possession several times during the course of an investigation. Any breaks in the chain can represent mishandling and contamination of evidence.

If you were arrested or charged with DUI, it is wise to select a skilled legal professional to fight on your behalf.

Source: FindLaw Blotter, "3 Ways to Challenge a DUI Blood Test." Maryam K. Ansari. January 24, 2013.

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