Reasonable Suspicion Is Required for an Officer to Ask You to Submit to a Preliminary Breath Test (PBT)

Just because your PBT indicated there was alcohol in your system, does not mean that it can be used against you.  In fact, many times a PBT is administered without reasonable suspicion and the results can be suppressed.

In order for a police officer to administer a PBT, that officer must have a reasonable suspicion to believe you were driving or in actual physical control of the movement of a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.  Pennsylvania Courts will not allow an officer to ask for a PBT based on merely a hunch.

In order to ask you to submit to a PBT, the officer must be able to point to specific observations and delineate why those observations would justify the administration of a PBT. If the officer is unable to point to specific observations that led him to ask for the PBT, the Court may find that he lacked the required reasonable suspicion and not allow the results of the PBT to come into evidence.  Additionally, if the court finds there was not reasonable suspicion to administer a PBT, the absence of the results could result in your entire case being dismissed.

If you or someone you know has been subjected to a PBT and arrested because of it, you should consult an attorney as soon as possible.  The experienced criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Justin J. Ketchel, LLC can determine if the administration of the PBT was warranted.  If the officer did not have reasonable suspicion to administer a PBT, the after-acquired evidence could be suppressed and your case dismissed.  If you would like to speak to one of our experienced DUI attorneys, please contact us at 412-456-1221 for a free consultation.