Texas v. M.A.
State of Texas v. M.A.
Harris County Criminal Court at Law #10 04/14/15
.159 BREATH TEST!!!! Client was pulled over on Labor Day weekend after 1am for speeding down 59 by an ex-DWI Task Force officer who was being paid Federal DWI overtime. Exactly: when you’re a hammer, everything is a nail. The video showed client speeding and then signal lane changes 7 out of 8 times. The Officer followed her for over 2 minutes before finally pulling her over. She pulled over safely and timely. The officer thought she was intoxicated because she was a 22 year old female that was talkative, had a distinct odor of alcohol, and red glassy eyes. The mug shot clearly showed that she had clear eyes. Again, the Officer, like every other case, got 6 out of 6 clues on the HGN. The client performed perfectly on the One Leg Stand with 0 of 4 clues. And then looked pretty darn good on the Walk and Turn but still scored 7 out of 8 clues. The jury was able to see how meticulous these tests were graded. The client was arrested and consented to a breath test. She blew a 0.159. However, the machine she blew on was taken out of a HPD BAT Van in June 0f 2012 and never recalibrated before being put back into service in August of 2013. Just 7 days after being placed into service the client blew on the machine. The machine was removed within 4 months of being put into service due to “too many Interferents.” However, after crunching the numbers, December showed only 7.8% of Interferents, where before client blew showed 9.8%. And why did they remove it, if the machine was doing its job. Additionally, the machine was never placed back into use. Unfortunately, we have Texas Department of Public Safety maintaining these machines and not an independent lab, so we will never know what is really wrong with this machine. But at the end of the day, our courageous jury said it just didn’t add up. She just didn’t look like someone over twice the legal limit. They didn’t believe the accuracy of that machine and gave the client her future back. The jury was a very very smart jury and I applaud their just verdict and thank them for standing up and demanding better forensic science. I hope each juror is proud of their verdict for the rest of their lives. Thank you again to that wonderful jury.