The Portable Breath Test (PBT): Is It Legal? Is It Proof of DUI?

In Columbus, Georgia, highly-trained DUI officers often ask the subject to perform several standardized field sobriety tests (HGN, Walk & Turn, and One Leg Stand), but what about the PBT? Is it legal? In the State of Georgia, courts do not allow the State to use the blood alcohol results from the PBT as evidence, but the arresting officer may use the PBT to support probable cause, before arrest, by showing the results to indicate the subject’s breath was either “positive” or “negative” for alcohol and therefore rely on the test to support probable cause to make the arrest. Ironically, the PBT does yield a BAC result which officers often rely upon, wrongly, to make the arrest. The PBT does not substitute for the Intoxilyzer Breath machine test which is usually requested AFTER the arrest and AFTER reading the Implied Consent Notice. The PBT test is therefore entirely optional…like all the other roadside tests, and your refusal is not proof of DUI. If you have been arrested for DUI in Columbus, Georgia, Call Ted Morgan Law NOW. (706) 622-6255.
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