Expert Witnesses in Henrico County DUI Cases
Expert witnesses are often called in DUI cases to present testimony about various processes. This could include blood tests and breathalyzer analysis, how the machine measures the alcohol content in the body, and the level of accuracy they possess. Expert witnesses could include nurses or doctors, technicians, or other qualifying individuals. Because the testimony of an expert witness holds much weight in court, it is very important that someone retain the services of an experienced Henrico County DUI attorney who has established relationships with these expert witnesses. By doing so, they will have a more thorough defense strategy that can challenge and potentially even overturn the prosecution’s approach.
Roles of Expert Witnesses in a Henrico County DUI Case
Expert witnesses play a primary role in a prosecutor’s case for a DUI or a DUID case. Typically the expert will present testimony about how the blood was drawn and handled with regard to a DUID case. They will also testify as to the results of the blood test and how those results are indicative of impairment. With an alcohol-related case, they will testify as to how the blood alcohol tests, such as a Breathalyzer test, are conducted as well as how the machine measures alcohol.
Primarily, prosecutors will call the nurse or doctor who drew the blood. They will also seek technicians from the Department of Forensic Science to testify as to how the blood was tested, how it was handled, and what drugs were found in the blood..
What Can Happen at Trial with Experts
When experts are used at trial, each expert will first present testimony on their qualifications and what makes them expert in the field. They will then testify as to how this experience relates to the case and on what other, similar cases they have worked.
If an expert has proper qualifications and presents them well in court, a great deal of weight is given to their testimony. This can often mean the difference between a conviction and a dismissal.
How a Henrico County DUI Attorney Can Help
It is important to have an attorney who knows experts in the field because an expert witness can really turn the tide in some cases. You need an expert who not only has the necessary qualifications, but also has experience testifying in court. This expert will also need to understand the legal issues involve in your particular case so that they do not miss any relevant issues when testifying.
A DUI attorney in Henrico County can challenge the qualifications of the expert by questioning their education and/or their experience in handling these sorts of cases. They can challenge the procedures that were used, how the blood was handled, how it was tested, and who handled it. In addition, if the individual who handled the blood is not present in court, the defense can challenge that evidence as hearsay.
Some Expert Witnesses the Defense Might Call
In a DUID or DUI case, a Henrico County DUI lawyer may call witnesses who can testify as to how the blood or breath tests were conducted and how the samples were handled. In most cases, however, the defense is using an expert witness to challenge the results of the test. If it is a DUID case involving prescription drugs, the defense can call either the prescribing doctor or another doctor to testify as to the effects of the drug on the individual. They can also challenge the findings of the blood test and challenge whether the amount of drugs found would actually cause any sort of impairment.