Why the police want you to blow: DUI and a Number
We have an "implied consent" law in South Carolina that provides that by driving on the roads of this State, it is implied that the driver consents to the testing of his breath, blood, or urine if there is cause to believe that person is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. A person has the right to take the test and a right to refuse the test. If he refuses the test, his license is immediately suspended for six months. If he takes the test and records a blood alcohol concentration ("BAC") of .15% or greater, his license is suspended for one month. See the carrot and the stick? In exchange for blowing .15% or greater, one's license would only be suspended for one month, even if the sample is nearly twice the legal limit or more and the potential penalty aggravated. Why? Because DUI cases are better for the State when they have a number to hang their hat on. Read the punishment table here. http://www.vannoylawoffice.com/dui-lawyer-moncks-corner/
A number provides a guidepost. For example, if we start at .08% being the legal limit where there is an alleged "inference" of impairment, then "obviously" (not my logic) the higher the number the drunker the person. If one refuses the test then the State does not have "scientific" (I hesitate to call it that) evidence of impairment. Further, the State has the argument the machine confirmed the arresting officer's initial impression that the defendant was materially impaired.
Since 2009, a BAC reading over .15% on the Datamaster, upon conviction of DUI, could mean 90 days in jail. I would not trust a machine to determine a jail sentence. Would you?
Brady Vannoy is an AV Preeminent rated lawyer who defends DUI and Criminal cases in Moncks Corner, Summerville, Daniel Island, Goose Creek, Hanahan, Bonneau, St. Stephens, North Charleston, Charleston and other areas of South Carolina. If you have been arrested for DUI or a Criminal charge, please contact us today for a free consultation (843) 761-0610 or through the contact page on this website. www.vannoylawoffice.com