A common request police officers make to people they believe are driving drunk is to submit to preliminary breath test (PBT). The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan believes that most of the time it is in the best interest of the person being investigated for drunk driving to refuse the test.
What is a PBT test?
A PBT is a small handheld device that tries to measure blood alcohol content. This device tries to do this by measuring the amount of alcohol in your breath. The safe rule of thumb when it comes to a PBT result being brought up in court is that the results are not allowed to prove how much alcohol is in the body of a person standing trial for a DUI.
PBTs have a bad tendency to produce false results. The reasons for this maybe other substances are found by the PBT, bad weather conditions and police officers who aren’t properly trained to use the device.
A PBT is a small device which is portable and the vast majority of the time a test with a PBT is given on the side of the road.
Should I take the PBT test when an officer asks me to?
In most cases, a person should refuse to take the test.
MCL 257.625a(2)(d) provides that ” a person who refuses to submit to a preliminary chemical breath analysis upon a lawful request by a peace officer is responsible for a civil infraction.” Due to additional penalties for commercial driver license (CDL) holders, refusing a PBT may not be appropriate for a CDL holder.
When a person refuses to take a PBT test, they will be given a civil infraction. By taking this test, a driver maybe giving a police officer probable cause to arrest you for DUI.
If you have any questions about this blog, call Shawn today at 616-438-6719. The call is free.
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