N.T. v. Comm'r of Public Safety
Today we prevailed in yet another Ignition Interlock Device (IID) case. The Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS) cancelled our client’s driver’s license after he provided two breath samples of 0.034 and 0.032. The cancellation brought harsh consequences, including the following requirements:
- Complete a new chemical evaluation and treatment;
- Pay $680 reinstatement “fee”;
- Take and pass another written test;
- Enroll for an additional six years on the ignition interlock program.
Our client insisted he hadn’t consumed any alcohol drinks. We filed suit and had a hearing before a judge. Our client testified about the circumstances the day of the event. While he didn’t know what caused the false positive, he was adamant that he did not drink alcohol.
We also presented testimony of a expert witness. The expert testified that these devices are not specific to ethyl alcohol, and other substances can cause a false positive. These substances include hand sanitizer, foods with sugar alcohol, and other chemicals. We also presented the data from the device that includes the device’s readings and the timing. The data demonstrates that the burn off rate was not what we would expect to see after one consumes an alcohol drink, and therefore the device was detecting something other than a consumed alcoholic beverage.
The judge agreed and overturned the cancellation. Once again our client was very happy.
We can’t win every case, but we feel we win more than any other firm fighting in this area. If you’ve got questions about your situation, please call us immediately as some timelines limit the period to challenge the revocation or cancellation.