As a hypothetical question: A driver crashes his or her car and anticipates that the police will eventually come and conduct a field sobriety test. The driver then, after the crash has occurred and before the police have arrived, goes to a bar and consumes alcohol. The police eventually do arrive at the scene and do conduct a field sobriety test and find the driver to be under the influence.

Will the police be able to use the results of this test to persecute the driver even if they cannot prove that the driver was under the influence when he or she was driving (since the driver can prove that he or she got intoxicated after the crash had occurred)?

Just a legal shower thought I had, curious as to something like this would be resolved.

1 Answer 1



A blood alcohol reading taken by a calibrated breathalyser within 2 hours is, by law, the reading at the time of the offence. If the accused elects to have a blood test, there is a specified formula for working back back to the reading at the time of the offence.

Consuming alcohol between the offence and the test will almost certainly make things worse for the offender.

This law was brought in in response to a case where precisely what you “shower thought” led to an acquittal.

  • Does this pertain to the United States? Feb 8, 2020 at 20:25
  • So don't drink after an accident (to calm your nerves down or whatever reason) after an accident if there is the slightest chance that the police ask you for an alcohol test. And that chance is always there.
    – gnasher729
    Feb 9, 2020 at 14:57

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