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DUI Defendants Skip Charge By Asking How Test Works
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DUI Defendants Skip Charge By Asking How Test Works - April 21, 2006, 10:37 AM

SANFORD - Hundreds of cases involving breath-alcohol tests have been thrown out by Seminole County judges in the past five months because the test's manufacturer will not disclose how the machines work.

All four of Seminole County's criminal judges have been using a standard that if a DUI defendant asks for a key piece of information about how the machine works - its software source code, for instance - and the state cannot provide it, the breath test is rejected, the Orlando Sentinel reported Wednesday.
Prosecutors have said they do not know how many drunken drivers have been acquitted as a result. But Gino Feliciani, the misdemeanor division chief in the Seminole County State Attorney's Office, said the conviction rate has dropped to 50 percent or less.
Seminole judges have been following the lead of county Judge Donald Marblestone, who in January ruled that although the information may be a trade secret and controlled by a private contractor, defendants are entitled to it.
``Florida cannot contract away the statutory rights of its citizens,'' the judge wrote. Judges in other counties have said the opposite: The state cannot turn over something it does not possess, and the manufacturer should not have to turn over trade secrets.

Dont get any bright ideas, in this area... LOL




"If brains were gas. You wouldnt have enough gas, to drive a piss-ants' motorcycle, half-way around a BB."
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April 21, 2006, 10:41 AM

thats actually a very good way to get out.. the design of the device is not open source.. so you cant resonablly validate that it is giving you a correct response..
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April 21, 2006, 10:49 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by WvGoDFather
``Florida cannot contract away the statutory rights of its citizens,'' the judge wrote. Judges in other counties have said the opposite: The state cannot turn over something it does not possess, and the manufacturer should not have to turn over trade secrets.
True, they cannot force a business to hand over trade secrets.

But good news, they can take away your ability to defend yourself!

Traffic court - where "Innocent until proven guilty" is a lie.

This has been going on for atleast 6 months down in Orlando (slashdot.org, a computer geek open-source news site, ran it a long time ago). Quite entertaining.

Last edited by rdg; April 21, 2006 at 11:04 AM..
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April 21, 2006, 10:49 AM

Quick, someone create a LGPL breathalizer.


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April 21, 2006, 11:00 AM

This is actually what reasonable doubt is based on. Sadly, because virtually anyone can raise reasonable doubt in a courtroom, reasonable doubt is no longer used to assess your innocence. The burden of proof no longer lies on the plaintiff but on the defendant, a HUGE distortion of our legal system. Two guilty sentences I received were instances where I was actually innocent, a crime against the public to which no one must answer. I like to see the undermining of the corrupt traffic judicial system.


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April 21, 2006, 11:15 AM

I think its something they need to settle on MythBusters!


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