Every so often legal stories will hit the headlines that attract continued attention. Those stories become more significant when they actually hit close to home. In the recent controversy regarding a lab worker’s mix-up in BAC tests in Tennessee, his wrongdoing will impact DUI cases right here in Hamilton County, as well as various other surrounding counties.
Among other DUI cases that need retesting because of the negligent (and now fired) lab worker, there are 5 cases from Bradley County that will involve the retesting of BAC samples. Also, 22 retests will be done for McMinn County cases. Other DUI cases from surrounding counties in the 10th district have warranted delay and further testing before any suspects’ cases move forward.
Depending on the results of the new lab tests, individual cases could be dismissed, but some drunk driving charges may very well proceed through the court system. We will follow the outcomes of various cases, though recognize now that the immediate message of this situation is how crucial it is for chemical tests to be challenged.
The worker responsible for the lab woes reportedly mixed up different blood tests, therefore issuing evidence that didn’t even belong to the appropriate case. Would you want your fate depending on the blood test of a stranger or resting in the hands of what is clearly sloppy work?
This could be an isolated case of error. Even just one lab mistake and one defendant being wrongfully accused of a DUI-related crime is enough to ignite thorough investigation into any case that might have been touched by the faulty lab work. Someone who is charged with DUI in Tennessee should work with a defense lawyer who can help protect a defendant’s future.
Source: Cleveland Banner, “34 DUI cases in 10th District to be retested,” Greg Kaylor, Nov. 17, 2013