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OC Evidence Error for 2000 DUIs

More than 2,000 DUI cases filed by prosecutors and 900 defendants have been affected by an Orange County DUI lab error, which caused an inaccurate report of elevated blood alcohol content levels.

Bruce Houlihan, the lab director, reported that the errors began to appear when some of the .BAC data wasn’t properly recorded. Houlihan said that the lab uses two separate machines to analyze and measure the blood samples and then averages the results. An audit of the Orange County Crime Lab last October uncovered the inaccuracies which has affected around 2000 DUI cases directly.

orange county dui convictions made with errors in evidenceBruce Houlihan went on to say that the reason the issue wasn’t noticed originally, was because it was so small. The human error will only clear around 20 people of their DUI charge, Houlihan went on to report. Letters have been sent to 900 defendants who have had their DUI cases resolved, to inform them of the lab error.

Farrah Emami, spokeswoman for the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, had this to say regarding cases that dropped below the legal limit of .08 to .07:
“There are cases we prosecute based on 0.07 and we secure convictions in those cases.” Emami went on to state that people should ask their attorneys about how to proceed if they feel their case was affected negatively by Orange County Crime Lab’s error.

Despite the severity of the lab’s errors Emani still felt, “The large majority of our cases will not be impacted…”

What do you think about flawed lab tests being used in court to convict individuals of DUIs?

For further reading about DUI blood testing lab errors.


If you or anyone you know has been arrested for DUI, you should contact a DUI Lawyer in Orange County as soon as possible. Call the Law Offices of Chad Maddox for a free consultation, (714) 695-1500.