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Montcalm Co. case dismissed due to issue with breathalyzer records

Posted at 1:38 PM, Jan 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-16 13:38:43-05

LANSING, Mich. — Michigan State Police have reinstated 37 of the 203 breathalyzer machines across the state after issues were found with the devices.

On Tuesday, the state took all Datamaster DMT breathalyzers out of service when they figured Intoximeters, the company responsible for servicing the equipment, may have been falsifying certification records.

Authorities said they didn’t think those records impacted the results of the tests but stopped using them until they could verify that.

MSP staff is working to make sure all the machines are properly calibrated and hope to finish that process for all 203 of them by the end of next month. Areas that most frequently use the Datamaster DMT and those with limited access to blood testing will be recertified first.

As of 7 a.m. Thursday, discrepancies have been found at eight locations, including the sheriff’s departments in Montcalm and Van Buren counties and the Niles Law Enforcement Center.

One of the discrepancies in Montcalm County caused an operating while intoxicated case to be dropped in August. MSP says a technician went to the county’s jail and signed the maintenance log for the breathalyzer machine without notifying them or the company of his visit and didn’t submit any paperwork.

Because the technician and Intoximeters couldn’t explain the trip, investigators doubted the reliability of the tests for a period of several days.