In 1998 Alabama abandoned the Intoxilyzer 5000 after controlled lab testing of blood and breath samples showed breath samples on the 5000 were artificially high. The apparatus failed Bama’s “quality assurance” program. The Georgia DUI breath apparatus (Intoxilyzer 5000) is a piece of police equipment. Hospitals don’t use them. Doctors don’t use them. The apparatus is used by police in traffic law enforcement. The apparatus hit the streets for police use in 1983. The version Georgia uses is an off-shot of the original one made in 1983.
Georgia’s DUI breath test
This isn’t the latest greatest breath apparatus on the market. Would it surprise you that the states Georgia borders: Alabama, South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi all test their breath machines at the time of testing? Just not Georgia. The National Safety Council “Committee of Alcohol and other Drugs” recommends performing an independent calibration or control test at the time of testing. But, not Georgia.
Government Failed to Preserve Evidence
What happens to the breath test sample once it leaves the Intoxilyzer? It’s gone like yesterday. The better machines allow the government to preserve the sample of breath that you give so you can have it checked by a CSI or forensic laboratory. Kind of like getting a second opinion. But not in Georgia. The Draeger Alcotest 7110 is “the mercedes benz” of alcohol testing. It captures full data on every single breath sample. Where is that type of machine used? Alabama, New York, New Jersey. In Georgia, you won’t get the benefit of being tested on one of these state-of-the-art machines. So your breath sample will not be saved. What’s worse? Your sample could be saved. There’s a device called the Toxi-Trap and GBI could have written a rule to save the breath sample so the jury would have the benefit of having another CSI independent (not GBI) lab analyze it. Kind of like having a second opinion.
In a DUI jury trial in Savannah, Georgia the government will give you a breath estimate number. Is it correct? It ain’t good enough for Alabama, so, why are we still using it?