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Why blow?

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AsiaOilDude View Drop Down
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  Quote AsiaOilDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Why blow?
    Posted: 08/November/2011 at 23:48
I've noticed through a search that a some people who are in police or political positions (overseas more so but it happens here too) refuse to blow in a breathalyzer when pulled over and allegedly apparently intoxicated. I assume the reason is that without definitive proof of the crime they are not truly guilty of DUI but rather refusing to take a breath test. Is it possible to refuse further testing in Australia (for example a blood test)?
Not legal advice. Personal opinion only. Seek legal advice from qualified personnel only.

jaazzz View Drop Down
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  Quote jaazzz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/November/2011 at 23:57


As far as I am aware, in Australia (may differ from state to state not 100%sure)a refusal to blow into a breathalyser carries the same penalty as a high reading.
Any opinion given should not be accepted as legal advice.

Please post your legal questions in a forum rather than sending a PM. Thanks

AsiaOilDude View Drop Down
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  Quote AsiaOilDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/November/2011 at 00:26
Yes I'm aware of that. I presume the tactic is to maintain deniability (however implausible) that one is drunk at the wheel. I'm told by a reliable source that in the USA government agents (such as FBI) almost always refuse to blow in the bag (but they do not have random booze stops like we do - the difference is in Oz is that you would run out of lifetime before you ran out of penalty time with the number of random stops in some areas).
Not legal advice. Personal opinion only. Seek legal advice from qualified personnel only.

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  Quote QuoVadis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/November/2011 at 06:18
Yes, you can refuse a blood test, for example on religious grounds. I have never read the legislation for myself but I believe that it works along the line that if you're suspected of being under the influence or another drug and you refuse, then it is deemed.
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AsiaOilDude View Drop Down
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  Quote AsiaOilDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/November/2011 at 09:13
Thanks QV. Would you QV, presuming you had made one mistake in a life of otherwise perfection, refuse to blow if you were pulled over and you just knew you were certain to be over the limit?
Not legal advice. Personal opinion only. Seek legal advice from qualified personnel only.

LawAbidingCitizen23 View Drop Down
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  Quote LawAbidingCitizen23 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 00:03
You can refuse, but as it has been said before you will get charged with an offence with the exact same penalties as high range PCA. Although it is an interesting tactic if you are absolutely blind and likely to go over .2 or so... If the cop is any good he'll make some pretty good notes on just how drunk you are in the fact sheet though.

AsiaOilDude View Drop Down
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  Quote AsiaOilDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 10:45
Sure - but as a tactical move it may be better as you say to be guilty of refusing to blow (particularly if you were a politician) and have some Police Officers observations and opinions on the record rather than have definitive proof in hand that you were actually drunk as a skunk and at the wheel.
Not legal advice. Personal opinion only. Seek legal advice from qualified personnel only.

AJM48 View Drop Down
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  Quote AJM48 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 11:13
Hmmm, I think we all know what the best option is here....being perfectly happy to blow

LawAbidingCitizen23 View Drop Down
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  Quote LawAbidingCitizen23 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 12:19
AOD,

Whilst not being considered 'experts' in court, the majority of magistrates I've seen put a lot of weight into a cops observations re intox. If it is clear that you were blind and refused the breath test seemingly for this reason, I doubt the magistrate will be too happy.... It is an interesting thought though.

LawAbidingCitizen23 View Drop Down
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  Quote LawAbidingCitizen23 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 12:22
The other side of it too is the facts sheet. If someone is polite and courteous throughout the process, the facts will be written quite differently to if somebody carried on the whole time. This could be pretty harmful if the cops observed the driver for a short time, rather than at a stationary RBT site.

AsiaOilDude View Drop Down
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  Quote AsiaOilDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 14:48
I think the tactic takes into consideration that the person will be penalized but the sacrifice is taken so that in the future some journalist or HR manager cannot write "Mr Court was convicted of DUI on XX/YY/ZZ".... rather their PR machine can counter with "Mr Court exercised his rights as a free citizen and refused a breathalyzer test on XX/YY/ZZ".
Not legal advice. Personal opinion only. Seek legal advice from qualified personnel only.

MickOne View Drop Down
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  Quote MickOne Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 14:58
AOD, you have hit the nail on the head. It is a tactic to avoid have a predictably high reading. If they know they will blow extremely high - better not to have a number to be hung next to your name.

PR tactic, not a legal one.

LawAbidingCitizen23 View Drop Down
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  Quote LawAbidingCitizen23 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 15:05
Fair point about the PR.

I've never seen it done, but I can't see any reason why a dui charge (not pca) and a refuse charge could both be done for the same incident.

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  Quote Ponala Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/November/2011 at 22:43
From a Vic point of view

refusing a breath test carries a minimum 2 year loss of licence, to get the equivalent loss of licence one would have to blow .24 (first offence)

.... rather their PR machine can counter with "Mr Court exercised his rights as a free citizen and refused a breathalyzer test on XX/YY/ZZ". .........................And was convicted of refusing a breath test - in other words Mr Court was so drunk when he was driving he'd rather not take a breath test but cop the 2 year minimum loss of licence - I don't think the 'free citizen' argument would work, people aren't that naive/dumb.


In regards to DUI and no breath test, can be done and has been done. Observations work a treat in court. Police can qualify themselves as 'experts' in regards to drunk, "Your honour he was so drunk that when he got out of the car, he couldn't stand up, had threw up on himself etc....." Refused breath test, and done for DUI.

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