What is the GERD Defense in a Colorado DUI Case?

The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) reports that each year, more than 26,000 people are arrested on suspicion of drunk or drugged driving throughout the state. While it is impossible to know the exact number, common sense and historical data would imply that some of these arrestees have been falsely accused. There are a number of reasons that law enforcement may make a false DUI arrest, including over-zealous enforcement, misinterpretation of a person’s behavior, poor training, and faulty or inaccurate chemical testing procedures or equipment. Whatever the reason, it is imperative that anyone who believes that they have been falsely accused of DUI discuss their case with an experienced attorney as soon as possible.3257643006_de544ff0d4

GERD can cause high breathalyzer reading

One of the more common reasons that people are falsely arrested for DUI is due to an inaccurately high breathalyzer reading. This can occur for a number of reasons, including GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disease, which is commonly referred to as acid reflux. According to a statistical brief published in the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project, up to 60 percent of the population will experience GERD symptoms at some point during the year, making it a significant health issue.

When a person has GERD, the contents of the stomach occasionally travel back up into the esophagus and into the mouth. This can affect breathalyzer readings because these readings use an algorithm to arrive at a person’s blood alcohol content (BAC) based on the amount of alcohol in the air expelled by the lungs. In people with GERD, alcohol from the stomach can enter the mouth, causing an inaccurately high breathalyzer reading. As a result, people who suffer from acid reflux and are under the legal BAC limit may be arrested for DUI based on false test results.

A Colorado DUI conviction can result in serious legal consequences

Some people may believe that it may not be worth the time and effort of fighting their case, particular for a first-time offense. In reality, Colorado law authorizes significant penalties even for first-time offenders, including the potential for significant fines, mandatory alcohol counseling, the suspension of your driver’s license, community service, and even jail time. Additionally, people who are convicted of DUI may face significant sanctions imposed by their school or work. As a result, anyone who is accused of driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol should retain qualified legal counsel as soon as possible.

Contact one of our Denver DUI lawyers today to schedule a free case evaluation

It is important for people who accused of drunk driving to explore whether any defenses may be available in their case. If there are, it may result in the case being dismissed, an acquittal, or the offering of an extremely favorable plea arrangement. The experienced DUI defense attorneys of the Tiftickjian Law Firm will thoroughly evaluate your case and determine whether there are any legal defenses that could be raised. To schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers, please call our office today at (303) DUI-5280.

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