Florida’s Intoxilyzer 8000: Problems with Flow Calibrations Surface Statewide

Judges throughout Florida are beginning to hear evidence about big problems with the way the Intoxilyzer 8000 attempts to calculate breath flow (which is one factor used to estimate whether a sufficient sample of 1.1 liters of breath is provided). If the machine is calculating flow incorrectly then all the other readings produced by the instrument are also inaccurate.

What’s the impact so far:

  • More than a hundred breath tests on the Intoxilyzer 8000 are being thrown out in DUI cases in Sarasota County and Manatee County, FL.
  • Breath tests done with the Intoxilyzer 8000 in Venice, FL, have been excluded for more than two years.
  • DUI prosecutors with the State Attorney Offices in Sarasota decided to insist that law enforcement pull the Intoxilyzer 8000 machines offline so that FDLE could take additional steps to attempt to correct the problem.
  • FDLE disagrees with the State Attorney’s decision to pull the breath test instruments out of service.
  • Other DUI attorneys throughout the State are filing similar motions and finding identical problems on Intoxilyzer 8000 instruments used in their jurisdictions.

Not surprisingly, FDLE takes the position that this or any other problem found by defense attorneys do not affect the accuracy and reliability of the subject’s breath test results.

If you have charged with drunk driving and submitted to a breath test on the Intoxilyzer 8000 in Hillsborough County or the surrounding counties, contact an attorney experienced with fighting the DUI breath test case. The attorneys at the Sammis Law Firm have been involved in two year fight to exclude breath test instruments in Hillsborough County on the following grounds:

* The administrative rules are wholly inadequate and even those inadequate rules were not followed when the Intoxilyzer 8000 was “approved” for use in Florida;
* The admission of the breath test results violates a person’s right to confront the evidence against him because the instrument makes complicated calculations that are hidden from the defense attorney, unknown by the breath test operator or even the top officials at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
* The Intoxilyzer 8000 is not an “approved” breath test in the State of Florida, because at the time it was approved it had not been added to the conforming products list.
* Even assuming it had been properly approved the numerous modifications to the hardware and software after the approval process means that the instruments eventually put into service were so different that they could not longer be called “approved” instruments.
* Our criminal defense attorneys and expert witnesses should be able to photograph the Intoxilyzer 8000 instruments used in Hillsorough County at the Orient Road Jail to see whether the internal parts are the same, to see who manufactures the flow sensor and other interior parts, and to determine whether differences between those instruments used in Hillsborough County and the instruments “evaluated” by FDLE.

Our Tampa DUI Attorneys are reviewing hundreds of breath test results to determine the best way to present these problems to judges in Tampa, Hillsborough County and the surrounding counties for our existing clients.

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