DWI Breath Test Source Code: Secret Software Leads to Guilt By "Star Chamber"

Posted On April 09, 2009 by Charles Ramsay

Another appellate court â?? this time in Arizona â?? has overturned a trial court's Intoxilyzer software ruling. The appellate panel said the judge should not have issued the order because the prosecutors did not have possession of the software and had no way of getting it.

In Minnesota, the Intoxilyzer 5000 â?? the breath test machine used in DWI cases â?? test result is admitted at trial without any expert testimony. All that is required is a police officer to testify that he was trained to operate the machine and the machine did not self-report any errors. The burden then shifts to the driver to show why the result is incorrect. Since Minnesota does not save the breath sample (with the use of a simple, $1 device) the driver faces an impossible burden.

Email communication between the Intoxilyzer 5000 manufacturer, CMI, Inc., and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, reveals critical flaws in the device. As I've blogged previously and has been reported by local FOX and CBS news, innocent people â?? those with alcohol concentrations below the legal limit â?? are going to jail.

Guilty by Secret Black Box = Guilty by "Star Chamber|

Innocent people going to jail based on a secret black box. The state and CMI prevent the experts from inspecting the software â?? the only way in most cases to refute the test results. This denies citizens of their Constitutional Right of Confrontation, of Due Process, to a Trial by Jury, Presumption of Innocence and to Present a Complete Defense.