Alcohol Detecting Flashlights?

Pennsylvania Police are Using Alcohol Detecting Flashlights to Identify Drunk Drivers in State College

As if we needed more untested, unscientific, inaccurate DUI technology, police in PA have been using DUI flashlights to detect drunk drivers:

Alcohol-Detecting Flashlights Introduced in State College DUI Enforcement

Police are using flashlights to investigate DUI in Pennsylvania

Police are using flashlights to investigate DUI in Pennsylvania

High-tech flashlights that can help police identify drunk drivers have arrived in State College, borough authorities announced Monday.

In fact, the flashlights — priced at $700 apiece — have already been in use here for several months, police confirmed. The devices are part of a multi-year, federally funded research project focused on DUI-enforcement effectiveness, borough police Chief Tom King said.

“This is an extension of the officer’s nose,” he told local reporters in a press briefing.

The specialized flashlights, known as passive alcohol sensors, appear as normal flashlights. But when one is placed within five to 10 inches of a motorist’s mouth, it can detect roughly whether he or she has been drinking lightly, moderately, heavily or not at all. Indicator lights illuminate to deliver the reading.

Those readings, while revealing, are not incredibly precise and, taken by themselves, would never be the sole basis for an arrest, King said.

Is anything the police do nowadays accurate?  The supposedly high-tech DUI breath machines police use are not accurate, field sobriety tests are not accurate, blood tests are not accurate and now we have DUI flashlights.  Instead of spending the money to make sure officers are properly trained, the police is spending their budget on unproven, inaccurate technology.

The downside here is these inaccurate devices will be the basis for DUI arrests because the only thing required for a DUI arrest is the opinion of the investigating officer; an opinion that has been biased by the flashlight results.  I am ready to bet that the bureaus using these flashlights will have a higher incidence of false arrests than before.

Now I’m just waiting for my alcohol-detecting 3D glasses.

PA DUI attorney Justin J. McShane is the President/CEO of The McShane Firm, LLC - Pennsylvania's top criminal law and DUI law firm. He is the highest rated DUI attorney in PA as rated by Avvo.com. Justin McShane is a double Board certified attorney. He is the first and so far the only Pennsylvania attorney to achieve American Bar Association recognized board certification in DUI defense from the National College for DUI Defense, Inc. He is also a Board Certified Criminal Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy, a Pennsylvania Supreme Court Approved Agency.

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