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Possible errors experts can make with Indiana DUI charges

On Behalf of | Mar 18, 2024 | Criminal Defense

DUI charges in Indiana can be stressful and confusing. One avenue for challenging these charges involves scrutinizing the drug recognition expert evaluation process.

In theory, DRE assessments would be thorough and reliable. In practice, it is very possible for errors to arise. These errors may cast doubt on the validity of the charges.

Variability in training and experience

One concern is the variability in DRE training and experience among law enforcement officers. The International Association of Chiefs of Police sets guidelines for DRE training. However, the quality and depth of instruction can vary. Discrepancies in training may lead to inconsistencies in evaluation techniques and interpretations of physiological symptoms.

Subjectivity in symptom interpretation

DRE evaluations rely heavily on the subjective interpretation of drivers’ physiological symptoms. Factors such as fatigue, illness or nervousness can mimic symptoms associated with drug impairment.

DREs may lack knowledge of medical conditions that can mimic drug impairment symptoms. Conditions such as diabetes, epilepsy, or neurological disorders can show symptoms similar to those caused by drug intoxication. Additionally, individual officers may interpret symptoms differently. This may lead to discrepancies in evaluation outcomes.

Potential bias and preconceptions

Human bias and preconceptions can influence DRE evaluations. Officers may unconsciously attribute observed behaviors to impairment, especially if they have prior knowledge of the driver’s drinking. This bias can undermine the objectivity of the evaluation process.

Inadequate documentation and recordkeeping

Accurate documentation in DRE evaluations helps with transparency and accountability. However, incomplete or inaccurate documentation can compromise the reliability of the evaluation process. Otherwise, it becomes tricky to verify the accuracy of the evaluation or challenge its findings effectively.

By understanding these potential pitfalls, individuals facing DUI charges in Indiana may be able to mount effective challenges.