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Corpus Christi, TX 78404

What are the Tests You Might Face When You’re Pulled Over for a DUI?

According to Texas Law, driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol (DUI) and driving while you’re intoxicated (DWI) are both considered to be misdemeanor offenses. If you’re suspected of either of them, a law enforcement officer will most likely administer a chemical test to see if there’s any alcohol or other substances in your system at the time of your DUI arrest in Texas. This test can be done in three different ways — a breath test, a blood test, or a urine test. All of them will prove if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.08% or higher by showing the presence of drugs and/or alcohol in your body. All of these tests will allow the officer to determine if you should be arrested and charged with a DUI or DWI.

sobriety test

The Breath Analysis

The breath test uses a machine called a “breathalyzer” that’s usually administered during traffic stops, and it’s probably the most common type of alcohol test being used in DWI cases. To take a breath test, you just blow into the machine while it determines the amount of alcohol in your breath. This figure is measured by a percentage, but it does have one flaw. While breath tests are easier for law enforcement officers to perform during traffic stops, they’re not as accurate as blood tests.

When you’re pulled over by a cop, he or she will ask you to take a breathalyzer test if they believe you may be drunk. You don’t have to consent to a breathalyzer test, but there will be consequences if you don’t submit to chemical testing. A warrant for a blood test will be issued both quickly and easily, which makes them legally allowed to take your blood. At this point, refusing to submit will result in more consequences. That’s why they always say, “Blow, Don’t Bleed.”

The Blood Test

The legal standard for intoxication in the State of Texas is having a BAC of 0.08% or more, which can be measured by a breath or blood test. While breath tests are more common, they’re much less accurate than blood tests. To measure how much alcohol is in your blood, they will take 100 milliliters from your body and put it through a process known as “gas chromatography” to find out if your BAC is over the legal limit. You can refuse to take a blood test, but it’s not recommended because doing so can cause the state to suspend your license. They can also use your refusal as evidence in future prosecutions.

They will most likely get a warrant for a blood test, so they can make you submit to chemical testing. That’s why it’s better to take the blood test if you’re asked. Submitting to a blood test at the time of your DWI arrest in Texas is the last thing you want to do. Not only is it invasive and unpleasant, but it’s also much harder to fight in court. Both blood and breath tests have their flaws, but contesting the results of a blood test will take a lot more work and expertise because the jury is more likely to believe the results.

The Urine Test

Also called “urinalysis,” a urine test is only used if the officer believes that the driver is under the influence of drugs or other controlled substances. But, they’re usually considered to be the least reliable of the three chemical tastes used in DWI cases. If a driver is pulled over because the officer suspects that he or she is under the influence of drugs and the urine test shows the presence of an illegal drug, it won’t necessarily prove that this person was driving under the influence. Because drugs will stay in a person’s system for a much longer period of time than alcohol, the results of a urine test may be inconclusive. The driver may be sober at the time he or she took the test. Like all the other tests, you can legally refuse to take a urine test. But, there are consequences for doing so.

If you have been charged with a DUI and you need a criminal defense attorney in Corpus Christi to help you with your case, be sure to get in touch with Gale Law Group. We have a team of experts who can help you come up with a solid defense, and they would be happy to speak with you about the specifics of your case.