Police all over North America use breath-tests to determine an individual’s level of intoxication and generally view this method as an effective and reliable means of determining whether or not someone has been driving under the influence. In Viera, Florida, however, this method of testing a driver’s level of drunkenness is being challenged in the courts. Specifically, the legitimacy of the breath-testing device branded the “Intoxilyzer 8000” is being brought into question. It has come to light that information was possibly withheld regarding the device’s shortcomings during its original approval process.
The argument made by those who oppose the device – many of whom are facing DUI charges themselves – is that law enforcement in the state of Florida intentionally excluded information related to the Intoxilyzer’s defects so that the approval process could be expedited and the police could quickly being using the device as an aide for administering DUIs.
There have been reports of the Intoxilyzer starting to smoke, concern that some pieces of machinery used to create the device have not been approved for use, and general suspicion that Florida law enforcement has not been as transparent as it should have been in this matter. The question to ask then is: were those involved in the approval process for the Intoxilyzer misled? If so, the Florida state police will be using any time they managed to save in speeding up the Intoxilyzer’s approval process to justify and legitimize all of the DUIs they have charged individuals with that were based on the results provided by the machine.