How Much Did You Have to Drink?

This is a critical question in any DUI case. A DUI defense attorney will know how to use an established scientific method called “Widmark’s Formula,” to determine whether the amount you had to drink was in fact enough to produce a reading over the “legal limit.” To be reasonably accurate, the period of consumption, rate of consumption and type of liquor consumed must be known along with other critical facts such as your body weight. This evidence is admissible in court to cast doubt upon the results of the breath test machine. Ultimately the jury will decide whether it believes in the sworn testimony of citizen witnesses or “guilt by machine.”

The Washington State Liquor Control Board in the past published and distributed BAC charts for men and women. These charts showed the Liquor Board’s best guess as to what the alcohol level would be for a given amount of drinking. The Liquor Control Board charts are included herein with this caveat: There are so many variables in the formula used to calculate breath test results based upon an individual’s weight and number of drinks consumed that the chart is practically worthless as a way to precisely determine an individual’s breath alcohol concentration. This fact, however, did not stop the Washington Supreme Court in the case of State v. Brayman from referring to the chart in its ruling that Washington’s DUI law criminalizing “per se” a given alcohol level is constitutional.