Texas DWI Defense Attorney Talks About Retesting Blood Samples

Sometimes, it is helpful to question the accuracy of certain types of physical evidence. Prosecutors often rely on blood or breathalyzer test results in DWI cases. The accuracy of breathalyzer test results can be called into question for a number of reasons, including user error. It is also possible to question the accuracy of blood test results. The practice of retesting blood samples in DWI cases is becoming more and more popular among defense counsel in light of reports of cases in which large discrepancies have been found between blood alcohol content of the original test result and the blood alcohol content found during a subsequent test of the same sample.

For example, one defendant was determined to have had a blood alcohol level of .208 when her blood was tested at a Texas Department of Public Safety crime lab. When the blood sample was retested by a Medical Examiner’s office, the test returned a result of .11. The large difference between the two test results is not something that can simply be explained away by the size of the sample or the degradation of it over time. The difference between those two test results is so large that it creates three important issues. One issue is the question of which test got the correct result. It is difficult to have confidence in either result since they are so far apart. Another issue is that the discrepancy between the test results could be indicative of an error, such as mishandling the sample. The third and perhaps the most important issue is that one test result would place the defendant’s blood alcohol level at twice the legal limit, making her eligible for harsher penalties than she could receive with the other test result, which is slightly over the legal limit.

It is important to remember that the aforementioned defendant’s case is just one example of a growing number of cases in which the accuracy of a blood alcohol test case was questioned. Two other examples of incidents involving concerns about the accuracy of blood tests in DWI cases relate to the accidental switching of blood samples at a Texas DPS crime lab. Those mistakes resulted in incorrect test results being attributed to two DWI defendants.

The increase in the number of DWI cases involving inconsistencies between original blood test results and results that are obtained after retesting the defendant’s blood sample create many important questions regarding the accuracy of DWI blood tests. If you have been accused of driving under the influence of alcohol, you may wonder whether the blood test result in your case is accurate. Sending your blood sample to another lab for retesting is one of many strategies that DWI defense attorneys use to question the accuracy of the prosecution’s evidence. A Texas DWI Defense Attorney can help you present a strong defense against DWI charges. Call the office of Jack Pettit, Attorney at Law today, at 214-521-4567, to learn more.


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