In Nevada, blood test are increasingly being used by police officers for Driving Under the Influence arrests. If you are arrested for a DUI, the police officer may ask you to submit to a breath test or a blood test. As Nevada is an “implied consent state”, you give “implied consent” to submit to an evidentiary test to determine your blood alcohol level, or breath alcohol level, simply by driving on Nevada’s roads. You may refuse to do so, at which point the police officer will have to request a warrant for your blood to be taken for testing. If you do not refuse, you will be arrested and taken to jail. At jail, a nurse or phlebotomist will take your blood and will send it off to a laboratory for testing.
For a first offense DUI, you may have the option to do a preliminary breath test first (commonly referred to as a “PBT”). Many people mistakenly believe that this test is a forensic test that is used in Court to prove someone is over the “legal limit.” In reality, the PBT is just an investigative tool that the police use in order to establish probable cause for a legally admissible forensic test. If the results of the preliminary breath test show your breath alcohol level to be higher than a 0.08%, the officer may ask that you submit to an evidentiary breath test or a blood test. If you say yes to the blood test, your blood will be drawn at the jail. If this is the second offense DUI, you will have to automatically submit to a blood test. A refusal to submit to a blood or breath test will result in your driver's license automatically being suspended for one (1) year by the Department of Motor Vehicles.
In Las Vegas, only certain people are able to withdraw your blood to test for alcohol or drugs in the blood. These people are physicians, licensed physician assistants, registered nurses, phlebotomists, and emergency medical technicians. Blood tests are more expensive than breath tests, and while you have a right to have your blood independently tested, the person being accused will have to pay for it at their own expense. The time it takes to get the results back for a blood test are longer than that of a breath test. For this reason, in many cases, you will not be formally charged with DUI until the government agency receives the results of your blood test, showing you were driving over the presumptive level of alcohol, marijuana, a prescription drug, an illegal drug, or a combination.
There are a multitude of defenses that can be raised against the results of a blood test. Some of these defenses include inefficient blood testing equipment, the person taking the blood was not properly certified, there was a break in the chain-of-custody of the blood, you had a rising blood alcohol level, the blood was not stored properly, or the blood test was taken too long after the initial arrest. If the Court agrees with the defense, the blood test results will not be allowed in Court and will not be allowed to be used against you. In certain refusal cases, if the warrant was not properly authorized, the blood test results will be inadmissible in court. However, as each case is different, the most proactive option will be discussing your matter in detail with an experienced Las Vegas Criminal Defense Attorney like Josh Tomsheck in order to yield the best results.
If you have been arrested for a DUI based on a blood test it is extremely important to contact a Las Vegas Criminal Defense Attorney as soon as possible. Las Vegas Criminal Defense Attorney Josh Tomsheck has over a decade of experience. He has successfully argued defenses against blood tests, since they are not always accurate and some may not have been administered correctly, or the blood withdraw violated the two-hour requirement by statute. Mr. Tomsheck may be able to prevent formal charges from ever being filed against you, which has happened to thousands of his past clients. For your free consultation, please contact him here today!