Breath analysis is the most commonly used method of testing for blood alcohol in Denver DUI cases. While not as accurate or reliable as blood tests, it has generally been regarded as acceptably accurate for use in Denver DUI investigations, if administered correctly. Colorado uses the Intoxilyzer 5000EN as the evidentiary breath testing device for all DUI-related breath tests in the state.
The principle behind “breathalyzer” technology is the partition ratio. The partition ratio is essentially the blood to breath conversion ratio. This is the ratio of the alcohol dissolved in the blood to the alcohol exhaled in the breath. The currently used blood/breath partition ratio is 2100:1. This ratio assumes that one milliliter of blood contains 2100 times more alcohol than one milliliter of breath.
The Intoxilyzer 5000EN relies upon averages and assumptions that are not supported by science or fact, which results in inaccurate test results. The results may be attacked by a seasoned attorney, and an expert in the field of alcohol testing and alcohol absorption. In addition, all officers who conduct intoxilyzer testing must undergo training and re-certifications in order to conduct breath tests on Denver DUI suspects. Officers who are not recertified and/or properly trained may cause fatal flaws in the process, which may result in BAC levels that are far too high.
When we handle a Denver DUI case, we obtain all the necessary information related to the case (the discovery). We specifically request discovery of the police officer’s report, notes, and any other law enforcement records related to the same. We also formally request all the reports in the possession of the DMV. A thorough review of those referenced documents may reveal errors in the testing process, errors in the calibration of the intoxilyzer machine, errors in the performance of the roadside tests, errors in the recertification of the operator or the machine, errors in the temperature that the machine must operate…the list goes on. The bottom line is that we win these cases on technicalities, usually caused by human error. If you were arrested for a Denver DUI and took a breath test, you only have seven (7) days to request your Express Consent hearing at the DMV. If you fail to request this hearing, you lose the right to a hearing and your license will undergo automatic revocation on day eight. For more information on the Intoxilyzer 5000EN, Colorado breath tests or requesting an Express Consent hearing.
Alcohol Blood Tests—Blood Alcohol Content Defined
Blood alcohol concentration is the “number of grams of alcohol in every 100 milliliters of blood”. When a person has a BAC of 0.08, that means that there is one-eighth (0.08) of a gram of alcohol in any given 100 milliliter sample of blood. One-eighth of a gram is equal to one hundred milligrams (a milligram is one-thousandth of a gram). So, at a BAC of 0.08, the person has 100 milligrams of alcohol in every 100 milliliters of blood, or exactly one milligram per milliliter. If a person has a BAC of 0.08 it means there are 0.08 grams of pure ethanol in every 100 milliliter (“percent”) of his/her blood.