In parts one and two of this three-part series, the criminal defense attorneys at The Rickman Law Firm have been discussing roadside oral fluid testing. These tests outfit police officers with a better way to detect drugs in the systems of drivers who have been pulled over during a traffic stop. However, these tests are still being assessed and have yet to gain approval from federal lawmakers. Once these devices are written into law, driving under the influence of drugs and other related offenses such as manslaughter and drug trafficking will be placed under more scrutiny. Manslaughter in particular, which is commonly a byproduct of driving under the influence, is one of the strongest motivators for the use of these tests.
Whether you need a DUI defense attorney or a manslaughter defense attorney in Tampa, The Rickman Law firm is equipped with the best tools for representing you in a court of law. If you want unparalleled representation supported by a proven track record, consult a manslaughter defense lawyer in Tampa from The Rickman Law Firm.
The Accuracy of Roadside Oral Fluid Testing
Although the accuracy and sensitivity of roadside oral fluid testing devices vary by model, most of the devices being used in pilot programs throughout the United States have proven more than sufficient in their ability to detect various drugs. This early success has lead to toxicologists and law enforcement officials to proceed with testing as they seek to perform a comprehensive evaluation of the efficacy and usability of these devices.
Some devices have proven less effective at testing for certain types of drugs than others. Testing accuracy for most drugs is typically in the 90 percent range, while THC (the psychoactive component of marijuana) can be detected with roughly 80 percent accuracy. More importantly, these devices are highly unlikely to provide a “false positive.”
Can Roadside Oral Fluid Testing be Used in Court?
Currently, roadside oral fluid testing is considered qualitative and is not admissible in court. If it were to be utilized as grounds for prosecution, it would require a secondary confirmation or evidentiary test. Quantisal, a device used to collect oral fluid for quantitative testing, may be used to support the results of a roadside oral fluid test. However, these tests often take weeks to provide reliable results. Still, roadside oral fluid testing has the potential to become the standard for drug-related DUI testing.
The President of The International Association of Forensic Toxicologists (TIAFT) believes that “Oral fluid will probably become the most prevalent matrix for DUID, certainly for roadside screening. Legislators and police officers want to rapidly perform DUID testing at the roadside, eliminating transport to hospitals or police stations. The main advantages are ease of collection and a generally shorter window of drug detection than urine, hence a better correlation with duration of impairment.”
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.