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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70417
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My son was arrested on suspicion of being in charge of a vehicle

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My son was arrested on suspicion of being in charge of a vehicle whilst under the influence. CCTV showed him apparently trying to start his m.bike he was checking steering lock before looking for a cab. They arrested him 20 mins later. He didn't have any keys on him and failed breathalizer he was genuinely unable to provide due to restricted breathing from medication. His dr has given him a letter to confirm this. He was charged with failure to provide and can't remember if he was given or offered a blood test. A solicitor will give him 5 mins on the day should he get his own as he is due in court on 10th Sept. What are his chances he had a drink drive conviction 5 yrs ago and this was his 1st night out since. He had no intentions of riding his bike and had no idea he did anything wrong
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Did he provide a specimen of breath?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
He managed roadside but it takes more breath on the machine at the station
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Ok.
So did he at the station?
If not, why not?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
He tried but couldn't as he was out of breath and was experiencing chest tightness apparently this can also be a side effect from tramadol
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Ok. We need to be frank with each other so I am sorry this is hard hitting.
The breath test requires you blow only a very small amount of breath. It requires no more pressure really than normally required to talk. Is he sensibly going to be able to find a doctor who is going to say that he couldn't do that?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
He suffers from panic attacks and anxiety this is on his medical records. He has managed to do a breathalizer test before 5 yrs ago
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Ok.
He is not charged with drink driving now. He is charged with failing to provide a specimen of breath and indeed he did not.
He can always defend this on the basis that he had a medical reason that prevented him from providing.
However, it would be irresponsible of me to tell you that there is a strong chance. On the facts you are describing, he does not have a medical reason. It might be that there is more to this than meets the eye and that he does have a defence that just isn't coming across here but from what you say above he does not. Panic attacks and anxiety does not prevent a person providing a specimen of breath and anyway there is no suggestion here that he was having a panic attack and so was prevented.
Its very unlikely that the medical note say that medication would make it impossible for him to provide as no medication has that effect upon people.
He may not get legal aid for this. A duty solicitor will see him under the duty scheme for the purposes of plea but if he is pleading not guilty and contesting this then a legal aid application will have to be made and may be refused. Its exactly the type of case where they may do that. He can self represent at trial if he cannot afford to pay privately.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
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