Robert Owens is a former prosecutor in Delaware County. Robert understands how the State will seek to build its case, use witnesses and convince a jury of guilt. Understanding this, Mr. Owens can effectively develop defense measures to counter prosecution strategies.

Field Sobriety Tests

If you were arrested for a DUI/OVI you probably participated in something called field sobriety tests. You probably failed them. In my experience, you could have been "set up for failure" because the test was administered incorrectly or the conditions for the test were inappropriate. Robert Owens has access to every manual and training guide that the police use. Robert Owens is experienced in cross examining the police officers on their deficiencies in failing to follow their training procedures. Robert Owens is experienced in winning a procedural hearing called a "Motion to Suppress" that can have a substantial impact on your case. Call 740-368-0008 or e-mail Robert@owenslawoffice.com and talk to an attorney as soon as possible.

Test Refusal

Ohio law does not require that you submit to a breath test. My experience in Delaware County is that such a refusal does not impact your case favorably as it might in more urban counties. If you refuse a breath test the jury instruction that the jury will hear says that they can consider the fact that you refused the breath test to be an agnolwogment by you that you might fail the test. That's not a good thing for you. However, Robert Owens has significant experience in obtaining dismissals of OVI/DUI charges in refusal cases through hard work and aggressive advocacy. Call 740-368-0008 or e-mail Robert@owenslawoffice.com and talk to an attorney ASAP.

DUI / OVI Charges In Delaware And Central Ohio Based On Breath Tests

Ohio law makes it illegal to operate a vehicle with a prohibited amount of alcohol in your breath, even if the alcohol is not impairing your ability to drive. If your ability to drive is impaired by alcohol, you may be charged with the separate offense of OVI 'impaired'. If a police officer suspects you are over the limit, the officer may ask you to submit to a breath test. If the result is at or above .080 (but under .170), the officer will charge you with DUI / OVI 'per se'. If the result is at or above .170, the officer will charge you with DUI / OVI 'per se, high test'. Ohio has different mandatory penalties associated with these breath test offenses.

DUI / OVI Attorney With Training In Breath Testing

Robert Owens has advanced training in breath testing. The course work covers in particular the BAC Datamaster; the most commonly used breath-testing machine in Ohio DUI / OVI cases.

How Ohio Breath-Testing Machines Work

The breath-testing machines used in Ohio DUI / OVI cases use infrared spectroscopy. When you blow into the machine, infrared energy is transmitted through the chamber containing your breath sample. Alcohol molecules absorb infrared energy, so the machine measures the amount of infrared energy absorbed. Based on the amount of infrared energy absorbed, the machine calculates the concentration of alcohol in the breath sample. The machine then prints the result on an evidence ticket, with the result expressed in grams of alcohol per 210 ml of breath.

Breath-Testing Machines Used For DUI / OVI In Ohio

Breath-testing machines must by approved by the Ohio Department of Health. Currently, there are three approved machines: (1) the BAC Datamaster; (2) the Intoxilyzer 5000; and (3) the Intoxilyzer 8000. Police officers also use portable breath testers (PBT) at the scene of Ohio DUI / OVI investigations, but the results of those portable breath testers are not admissible in court.

Ohio Law For Breath Tests

Ohio has statutes, regulations, and cases regarding the use of breath tests as evidence in court. The statutes say, in a nutshell, that the breath test must be administered within three hours of vehicle operation and must be analyzed according to the methods approved by the Department of Health. The regulations by the Department of Health contain rules for maintaining breath-testing machines, checking the accuracy of the machines, administering breath tests, issuing operator permits, and maintaining records.

Case law contains decisions by courts interpreting the statutes and regulations. The most curious Ohio case regarding breath testing is the 1984 case of State v. Vega, which held a defendant may not make a general attack on the reliability and validity of the breath-testing machine. Many Ohio courts have interpreted Vega to prohibit any defense regarding the accuracy of the breath test result.

Strategies For Ohio DUI / OVI Cases With Breath Tests

A good DUI / OVI attorney may make a difference in cases involving breath tests. First, the attorney can review the records maintained by law enforcement. If law enforcement agencies do not maintain, repair, and use the breath-testing machine in compliance with state regulations, the results of the breath test may be inadmissible ("thrown out"). Second, if the breath test is not thrown out, a DUI / OVI attorney can seek to show that the breath test result was inaccurate due to problems with the testing procedure and problems with the machine, as well as the health conditions and other circumstances of the client.

Expert Witnesses are Effective

Robert Owens has a long and distinguished track record of effectively using expert witnesses to counter prosecution evidence. Injuries like concussions can often mimic signs of impairment. Expert Witnesses can also be effectively used to counter breath test evidence offered by the prosecution.

Attorney For DUI / OVI Breath Test Cases In Delaware And Central Ohio

Call Robert Owens at 740 368-0008 or e-mail at Robert@owenslawoffice.com

Robert Owens
- Former Prosecutor, Now Defense Lawyer