MN Judge Orders State to Disclose Breath Test Instrument’s Source Code

Minnesota uses the DataMaster DMT with Fuel Cell Option breath test instrument to test DWI suspects all across the state. On behalf of our clients, we want to know whether the machine works right. So, we have demanded that the prosecutors on our DWI cases provide us with the computer software, called the “source code,” that runs the instruments.

As a matter of basic fairness, if the government wants to use the scientific test results to try to convict its citizens of criminal offenses, then at least they should provide us with the scientific information so that we can see if the test results are accurate, right? Well no — prosecutors across the state have refused to give us the source code claiming that it’s somehow not relevant or that they don’t have it.

On Tuesday, after lengthy hearings and arguments in one of our Sieben Edmunds Miller cases, a Minnesota district court judge finally ordered the state prosecutors to disclose a complete copy of the source code to our expert. Unfortunately we don’t expect it to be that easy. The prosecutors and the breath test machine manufacturer will likely not want to comply with the judge’s order. But if they intend to use the test results at trial, our clients should be able to understand how the machine works.

Getting a judge to compel the state to disclose the source code has been a significant battle that we did not endure alone. We want to thank attorney Charles Ramsey and the other attorneys in the defense bar who have contributed to this fight. We have a feeling that this is only the beginning of the story. We will keep you updated as the case progresses. If you or a loved one is facing a DWI offense based on a breath test that was allegedly over the limit, contact the experienced DWI defense lawyers at Sieben Edmunds Miller PLLC right away.