Woman in Zombie Costume Arrested for DWI Twice in One Evening
Catherine Butler, a 26-year-old resident of Rochester, NY, had a few too many drinks while at the zombie prom, and tried to drive herself home around 2 AM on Saturday, October 25th. The police officer who pulled her over originally noticed that she did not have her headlights on. However, the officer believed that Butler was intoxicated, so he arrested her on DWI charges and took her to jail, where a friend picked her up around 5 AM.
However, rather than allowing the friend to drive her home, Butler got back in her car. She still had her zombie costume on, and apparently still had a little bit of a buzz as well. She was pulled over and arrested again on DWI charges after another officer noticed that she was failing to maintain her lane – a classic sign of drunk driving.
It is unknown if Butler has a lawyer, but she is due in court for the DWI charges in November.
Challenging DWI and DUI in South Carolina
For South Carolina, “a breathalyzer” actually refers to a DataMaster unit, which measures blood alcohol via infrared wave readings of breath samples. These units are maintained by SLED at approved breath testing sites across South Carolina
The accuracy of a DataMaster breathalyzer depends on the unit, the timing of the testing and the testing process for the suspected motorist. Plus, there are procedural steps such as videotaping a breathalyzer test, which if omitted, can weaken the prosecuter’s ability to use it as evidence.
Breathalyzer Testing in South Carolina MUST Include …
- The machine must be properly maintained and in working order.
- The testing operator must comply with a 20-minute observation period before testing. This 20-minute period should be recorded on videotape. The purpose of this procedure is to rule out a false reading. If the suspected motorist had a drink just prior to testing, the reading will not be reliable.
- The collection of breath sample must be taken within two hours of arrest.
- The test administrator is required to be trained and certified by the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy.
- The suspected motorist must be informed of a right to refuse a breathalyzer.
- Before a breath test is administered, a simulator test must be performed on the DataMaster with a result between 0.076 percent and 0.084 percent.
- Maintenance records on the specific DataMaster must be made available by SLED upon request.
- The motorist being tested must be notified in writing that he or she has the right to select a qualified person of choice to conduct additional tests. The arresting officer must provide “affirmative assistance” for this endeavor or else any police-administered breath test will become inadmissible.
Sometimes, breathalyzers give false positives, and the motorist is not actually driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while impaired (DWI).
A motorist’s own biology or medical condition may give false readings on a breath test such as:
- the depth of breaths
- excess saliva
- physical size
- medical condition
The Strom Law Firm Can Help with DUI and DWI Charges
If you face DUI charges, sometimes referred to as DWI or “driving while impaired,” whether it is your first charge or felony DUI, you could feel alone and afraid. Just because you have received DUI charges does not automatically mean that you are guilty. The attorneys at the Strom Law Firm have helped people who face DUI and DWI charges since 1996. We offer free, confidential consultations so you can discuss the facts of your case with impunity. Contact us for help today. 803.252.4800