In The News

Friday, August 8, 2014

Michigan Drunk and Drugged Driving Attorney Mike Nichols Leads The Way To Creating An Uncertainty Measurement With Breath Alcohol Testing

By Michael Nichols
Categories: Michael J. Nichols, Drunk-Driving, OWI

A Grand Rapids District judge has concluded hearings on measurement uncertainty and breath testing. The court ruled that there is always a variance for error associated with a measurement for breath alcohol.

Details will follow but the court adopted in part the measurement of uncertainty by metrology expert Andreas Stolz PhD. Dr. Stolz has been leading the way to bring science into the court rooms in forensic analysis so that juries and judges are fully informed about what a measurement means.

Atty. Mike Nichols if East Lansing was cocounsel on the case. He said "at least we brought a little more science into drunk driving cases than what the Michigan legislature will allow. The legislature tried to restrict the areas reported with a breath for blood alcohol measurement by allowing the creation of administrative rules by the Michigan State police that make it seem like it will always be no more than .004 on either side of the actual result in every case assuming all things are considered equal. "We have learned since the implementation of breath alcohol testing that nothing is perfect and the assumptions are never ever going to be applied equally in every case," says Nichols of Meridian Township.

This is not an appellate case and the government will not appeal most likely. The additional considerations of uncertainty factors across the state remains to be seen.   Additional problems with breath testing on the new instrument used by the Michigan State police include the software and or "source code" and why so many features that the manufacturer spent time to develop for the new instrument were ordered "shut off" by the state procurement office.

For the lawyer who is a leader in forensic analysis and science in the court, contact Mike Nichols at 5174329000 or mnichols@nicholslaw.net

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Peer Recognition

Mike Nichols is a national leader in drunk driving defense. He is a member of the Forensic Committee and Michigan delegate to the National College for DUI Defense. He is also a Sustaining Member of the College. Nichols is also a founding member of the Michigan Association of OWI Attorneys; a member of the American Chemical Society; an associate member of he American Academy of Forensic Science, Adjunct Professor of Forensic Evidence in Criminal Law and OWI Law and Practice at Cooley Law School. He is also author of the West OWI Practice book and several chapters in other books on science and the law.

Mike Nichols is recognized by his peers in Michigan as a “SuperLawyer” in DUI/Criminal Defense. Nichols has also been asked to speak at conferences by groups such as the NCDD; Various Bar Associations in other states.