Hearing Prevents Driver’s License Suspension

Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

John Ingrassia was successful in preventing his client’s driver’s license being suspended after a hearing before a Judge. Under the law, an individual who is charged with DWI is required to have their license suspended if the Court finds reasonable cause to believe that the person operated a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 of one percent or more and the court is in possession of an original breath analysis certification reflecting same. An accused does, however, have the right to a hearing in order to present evidence which tends to rebut the finding that their blood alcohol content was .08 of one percent or more .

Mr. Ingrassia’s client proceeded with such a hearing and testified that he had a foreign object (chewing tobacco pouches) that were in his mouth while he was consuming alcohol and that he removed the pouches less than 15 minutes prior to submitting to a breath test. Under NY law, a 15 minute observation period is required to ensure that the subject did not have anything in his mouth for at least 15 minutes prior to the breath test. Mr. Ingrassia also called an expert witness at the hearing who provided testimony that the breath test result would have been compromised given the failure to wait the appropriate waiting period. The expert calculated Mr. Ingrassia’s client’s BAC to be less than a .08 and he also testified about his own personal experiments where failure to wait the required 15 minutes have resulted in falsely elevated BAC levels.

As a result of the hearing Mr. Ingrassia’s client’s license was not suspended.