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Are hand held breathalizers legal in court

Salyersville, KY |

I was pulled over in my drive way after going horse back riding all day long, the reason the cop was at my house was they had a complat where I had stoped and my truck kept dying and these kids where getting agerfated because I was in the way of them leaving to go to a spring formal. The parents called the police as I finally got to leave,The police officer know where I lived. He than had me to blow into a hand held (out of trunk) breathalizer machine. He said I did not blow right and put me into the car. I was not drinking. He also thettened to taser me. I was respectfull and done everthing he ask of me, He took me to jail, and I spent 8 hours in jail. never read rights andhave on idea what I blow or I charged with. I recieved nothein telling me what I was charged with.

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Attorney answers 3


In general in a DUI case, in Kentucky courts, the results of the portable breathalyzer are admissible to show the presence of alcohol but the level of the results are not admissible, even though KRS 189A.104 states that "the only alcohol or substance testing that is subject to refusal or enhancement of penalties provided for in this chapter is: (a) Breath analysis testing by a machine installed, tested, and maintained by the Commonwealth for that specific purpose at a police station or detention facility;"

I strongly recommend that you retain the services of an experienced attorney to help you fight this matter.

This answer is for informational purposes only. DO NOT rely on it as legal advice. Many times there are not sufficient facts to properly respond to a question. Nothing in this answer should be construed as creating an Attorney-Client relationship. If you need legal advice, you should contact a licensed attorney.


Handheld breathalyzer, also known as PBT (portable breath tests) are generally not admissible in court in Kentucky other than to show presence of alcohol. Talk to a local criminal defense lawyer. If you were not charged with anything, you may want to seek a civil rights attorney. The police do not have right to hold you in jail without any charges.

Kentucky law does not certify specialty of practice in this area. The advice given herein is informational and should not be considered as creating an attorney/client relationship. Michael Bouldin is an independent attorney located in Northern Kentucky. It is strongly recommended to not give any confidential information on any website.


You need to hire a criminal defense lawyer ASAP.

There are several issues here. Have your attorney locate Allen vs. Commonwealth, which addressed the portable breath test/results re: admissibility:

Allen v. Commonwealth of Kentucky - DUI Lawyers Network‎
Allen v. Commonwealth of Kentucky. 10/25/1991. This is an appeal from a ... motion to suppress the results of a preliminary breath test and a blood alcohol test.

I am trying to give you a general answer to your question. We do not have an attorney-client relationship by this response on the avvo website. I have not been retained to represent you. I am licensed to practice law in Kentucky and in federal court in this state and the Southern District of Indiana. You need to seek legal advice from an attorney licensed to practice in your area..