Friday, December 19, 2014

Seattle DUI Attorney, Nate Webb, discusses the common question: "How can I beat the breath test?"

Seattle DUI Attorney, Nate Webb, answers the question: "How can I beat the breath test?"

Quite frequently when I am at a dinner party or some other function and disclose that I am a DUI attorney, I'm inevitably asked the question, "what do I do if I get stopped" which then turns into "how can I beat the breath test?"  Well, the smart alec answer is "don't drink and drive" and of course that is true, but what about the person who has consumed alcoholic beverages responsibly and is now faced with a breath test?

Well, that person knows in their mind they don't feel affected or impaired but have no idea how this machine measures breath.  There are known variances which automatically raise your level which I've previously blogged about but here is another tip for those concerned with being near the per se ("legal limit") threshold of .08 and blowing over after drinking.

TIP: When you are taking a breath test, the machine (DataMaster) will record a proper sample at approximately 5 seconds and most assuredly at 8 seconds so your best bet is to blow only for that period.  The officer or trooper will coach you and demand you blow much longer, but that minimum is all that is necessary for the machine to record a result.  The reason this is important is because there is much research which indicates that the longer you blow the higher your result will be.  Troopers regularly testify that when you blow longer it just records a "more accurate" sample but the truth is the longer you blow the "higher" your result, not more accurate.  Law enforcement is trained on this concept and typically demand a 20 second or longer blow from a subject thereby increasing the sample.  Meeting this minimum level will be recorded in the online database and probably won't make the officer happy due to their training to get you to blow longer, but the fact is if you submitted a proper blow and it was recorded, you complied with the request.  Also, the result will be much lower than if you actually blow 20 seconds or more.  

Some people will say that you should suck on a penny or some other object to skew the results, but I have not ever found that to be an accurate or advisable method.

A seasoned Seattle DUI Lawyer will know how to challenge the results provided and present the known variances and presumptions in breath testing when a jury trial occurs, but this is just one tip.

Also, if you did submit to a breath test, always, I repeat, always ask for an independent blood draw.  You cannot be denied that opportunity.  If it was denied because you were booked into jail then the breath test results should be suppressed by the court.

If you or someone you know has been arrested for DUI, call today for immediate assistance from one of the "Top Attorneys" in Washington State for DUI Defense and Super Lawyer Rising Star and Superb rated DUI attorney (  Hundreds upon hundreds of satisfied DUI clients.

Call today (425) 398-4323 or visit our site:

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Seattle DUI Attorney, Nate Webb, Marijuana DUI Lawyer discusses: Is one puff too many, two puffs, three puffs?

Recently I had an individual come and see me about a possible Marijuana DUI charge.  Hypothetically if an individual admitted to use, which is legal in the State of Washington, but was adamant they were not impaired by their "one" puff prior to driving and that the use was for therapeutic reasons can they still be convicted?.  Typcially I would assure an individual that one puff wouldn't get them close to the per se limit of 5 ng/mL of whole blood.  But it does beg the question, how many puffs are too much given the 5 ng/mL standard?

When the legislature enacted the per se limit of 5 ng/mL of whole blood as a per se "impaired" limit it essentially relied upon other state's per se limits.  There is no definitive research out there which establishes that ever person who had a whole blood concentration of 5 ng/mL is impaired to the degree that they cannot operate a motor vehicle.

So when someone is a regular user, much like a regular consumer of alcohol, how does that individual know how much is too much?  There is simply no way to tell given the quality of the herb, the potency of the particular varietal they smoked or consumed.  It is a very slippery slope that people are not encountering.  When in doubt, don't smoke and drive but if you are therapeutic user for example you would be well-advised to have your blood checked a few times after you normal use to determine where you are on the spectrum of ng/mL measurements.

Personally I believe it isn't fair for the therapeutic users to be subjected to arrest simply because some overzealous trooper or officer smells marijuana and automatically thinks they have someone impaired when they typically have very limited ability to determine impairment using roadside test which were implemented to gauge impairment of drivers who consumed alcohol.  This area is ripe for litigation given law enforcements limited ability to tell if someone is impaired or under the influence of marijuana.

Just look at NHTSA's own description of use of marijuana, it is so vague I wonder if the Washington State Legislature really did any research at all.  Also, see this resource which says that marijuana use doesn't significantly impact driving abilities as well as a University of Washington study which says it still needs more research to definitively say whether there is any impact on driving.

If you or someone you know has been arrested for a DUI, including a Marijuana DUI, call today to speak with a highly experienced DUI attorney, Seattle Marijuana DUI Lawyer, Nate Webb at (425) 398-4323.