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In SC, if the breathalyzer trips off, a retest is done and malfunction is never reported to SLED, is reading allowed in court?

Barnwell, SC |

The Datamaster breathalyzer was in use on a DUI suspect and in the middle of the testing it just locked up for no apparent reason. Operator restarted, did the test, got the BAC reading but violated SLED procedures by not reporting the malfunction to SLED. No repairs or inspections are documented in the SLED database in regards to this malfunction nor were there any status code messages..

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Attorney answers 3


This should all be on video. Have your attorney review the Datamaster room video and file a motion to suppress.

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Whether the breathalyzer results ultimately come in during a trial is uncertain. The issue would be decided by the Judge in a pre-trial hearing, outside the presence of the jury.


Anytime your are dealing with admission of evidence in a criminal court you are getting into a very technical legal area regardless of the state. While some cases are certainly cut and dry these types of issues generally require consultation with a knowledgeable attorney because the admission of evidence always deals with a vast amount of prior case law and other issues.

These statements do not constitute legal advice. They are meant to be general in nature, for any specific legal questions you should always seek the counsel of an experienced attorney.

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