How Much Does BAC Really Matter in a DUI Case?
Facing a DUI charge in Florida is serious. It can impact your finances, your current or future employment opportunities, and your status as a free individual. Don’t let one mistake follow you for the rest of your life.
Before you take your DUI case to court, consider how your blood alcohol content (BAC) really matters for your DUI case. Your lawyer at Hersem Law is ready to take action and get your charges reduced or dismissed.
What Constitutes a DUI?
DUI stands for driving under the influence. That influence can be alcohol or drugs.
DUI convictions carry different penalties depending on several factors determined by the court. Penalties include fines, imprisonment, license suspension or revocation, impoundment of an individual’s vehicle, or court-ordered DUI school.
What Is a BAC Level?
Your BAC level determines whether you’re over the legal alcohol limit for your age and other factors. In Florida, the legal limit is .02 percent for individuals under 21, the legal drinking age. For individuals older than 21, the limit is .08 percent.
Your blood alcohol content is measured by a device called a Breathalyzer, which cops carry to use during traffic stops when deemed necessary.
It’s difficult to figure out exactly how many drinks will put a person over the legal limit because there are several factors to consider, including metabolism and body weight. The safest way to ensure you aren’t driving over the legal limit is to never drive after having a drink.
How Can BAC Be Used in Court?
Your blood alcohol content is constantly changing as the body processes the alcohol. Because of this fluctuation, the BAC of a driver can be different at the time of testing than it was while the individual was driving.
On occasion, the state or defense team may choose to call an expert to perform retrograde extrapolation. This is a calculation made by an expert that can estimate the individual’s BAC while they were driving before they were tested.
BAC can be used as damning evidence by prosecutors when it is over the legal limit of .08, or by the defense, if it is under .08. BAC is not the only evidence considered in DUI cases and can be overridden by other evidence.
Breathalyzers may also malfunction, which means that contesting the accuracy of a Breathalyzer test could prove to be a successful choice.
Breathalyzers can show false positives if the individual being tested has recently taken certain medications, used mouthwash containing a percentage of alcohol, drank kombucha (or similar fermented health beverages), consumed an energy drink, or even eaten a poppy seed bagel.
Seek Out a Reliable Florida DUI Attorney
If you have been charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in Florida, know that the outcome isn’t written in stone. With a reliable criminal defense attorney, you may be able to beat your conviction, learn from your experience, and live a happy, fulfilled life.