NJ DWI Blood Tests – NJ DUI Blood Tests – Blood Tests For DWI Charges In New Jersey
“I was blood tested for my DWI in New Jersey. Can I fight the results?”
The law with respect to NJ DWI blood tests or DUI blood tests is somewhat complex, but this is a highly challengable form of DWI.
For example, if you were pulled over and the officer conducted field sobriety tests (which gave him probable cause to test your blood alcohol content), he then has a right to determine whether you were driving while intoxicated (in NJ this would be a BAC of 0.08% or higher). The most common way to do this would be to take a breath test. However, in certain circumstances the officer can take a blood test (most commonly when there was an accident and the driver has been injured). Both of these results are enough to convict you for DWI.
The main difference is that if you refuse a breath test, you will be charged with a “DWI Refusal” charge and it will hold up in court. If you refuse a blood test, they are unable to charge you with refusal because “refusal to submit to a blood test” is not a valid charge. On the other hand, they can forcibly take your blood and you do not have the right to refuse. Sometimes officers make mistakes in these situations and an experienced DWI defense lawyer can exploit these issues.
Many times DUI blood tests are administered when the defendant has gotten into an accident, and is not conscious to be tested using the Alcotest breath testing device. However, this is not always the case, and you need to be aware of your ability to refuse this test. I can beat a blood test refusal 100% of the time (because this is not a valid charge under the law). I can beat a blood test DWI in a few scenarios:
- The sample was not taken in a medically acceptable manner;
- The evidence has been contaminated;
- The state is unable to provide the results in a timely manner.
New Jersey doesn’t have specific requirements with respect to how the blood sample is taken. It doesn’t have to be taken by a doctor, and there are no specific guidelines to how the blood must actually tested. A good DWI defense attorney will be able to cast doubt on this portion of the procedure, the handling of the evidence, and whether or not the method was “medically acceptable”. Many times, its more important for your attorney simply to make sure that the State can actually account for these procedures. If not, the results can potentially be thrown out.
Don’t forget, everyone makes mistakes; police officers, doctors, nurses, and labs can all potentially make an error that will let you off the hook.
Some of the things to evaluate are:
- Could the alcohol swab have effected your BAC level?
- Was an artery used or was a vein used?
- Was the correct amount of blood drawn, and were the proper additive levels of anticoagulant used?
- Were any of the tubes faulty or unclean?
- How many people handled the blood and could it have been contaminated?
- Was the actual testing procedure conducted correctly?
- Can the state provide evidence of the Chain of Custody, or the transfer of the evidence from place to place?
All of this information is included in the “discovery” pertaining to your case. If any of it is missing, we can potentially have your case thrown out.