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Los Angeles DUI and Alcohol Metabolism

  • May 26, 2017

    Many people think that drunk driving investigations are simple. However, a drunk driving arrest isn’t as easy as taking a breath test. There are many reasons why the breath test might not be an accurate reflection of a person’s bodily alcohol content at the time that they drove a vehicle.

    A breath test can be inaccurate if the law enforcement officer doesn’t administer it properly. That means making sure that a person doesn’t put anything in their mouth, smoke or vomit before the test. It means making sure that the testing machine receives periodic maintenance testing.

    Even with all of these safeguards, a breath test can still be an inaccurate reflection of a person’s alcohol level on the road. That’s because of body metabolism. Each person digests and eliminates alcohol differently. Even in the same person, alcohol can affect you differently from one day to another. An experienced Los Angeles DUI attorney knows that this alcohol metabolism issue can often pose a problem for law enforcement when they’re trying to prove a drunk driving case.

    If you ate recently, your body might metabolize alcohol faster than it would if you drank on an empty stomach. How much water there is in your system can be another factor. How much you drink over a given period of time is another important factor. Your weight is another thing that can change the way that alcohol affects your body.

    Even the type of alcohol that you drink can make a difference in how your body metabolizes alcohol. Some liquors are more concentrated than other types of alcohol such as beer. As a result, these liquors are more likely to result in a higher level of intoxication more quickly than you might see with a person who drinks beer.

    All of this means that law enforcement can charge a person with drunk driving when they really aren’t over the legal limit when they’re driving. In fact, your alcohol level can rise as you take the ride in the police car to the station for the breath test. This is especially the case if you drank recently before you drove the vehicle.

    Most drunk driving investigations take at least a few hours. From the time that a law enforcement officer stops your vehicle to the time that you’re booked into jail, there are many things that happen. The police talk to you as you sit in your vehicle. They might ask you to get out of your vehicle.

    In most cases, the police ask you to take field sobriety tests. These tests take time to explain, and they take time to perform. You might make arrangements for your vehicle if law enforcement is going to arrest you. All of this takes significant time. The result can be that you take the breath test hours after you drive the vehicle.

    If you think that your alcohol level may have risen after you drove the vehicle, it’s important to work with a DUI attorney to evaluate your options. You might benefit from bringing an expert witness with you to trial. This witness can explain to the jury how the body metabolizes alcohol.

    They can help the jury understand how the breath test might be an inaccurate measure of your alcohol level on the road. In most cases, the court requires an expert witness to present arguments that your body metabolized the alcohol in a way that caused an inaccurate reading in your DUI case. Your attorney can help you find the right expert so that you can aggressively defend yourself against the drunk driving charges you’re facing.

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