Defending You Is Our Job

Studies question the accuracy of roadside drug testing

On Behalf of | Aug 8, 2023 | Criminal Defense |

Law enforcement agents may use a variety of tactics when investigating the possible presence of drug-related activity, one of which may pertain to roadside drug testing. However, while these tests may be intended to react when combined with illegal substances, are drugs such as heroin and cocaine the only substances that produce a positive reaction? Studies have raised concerns about the accuracy of these tests and individuals in Massachusetts who face drug charges under such circumstances may have questions about whether they might be able to contest the results of roadside drug testing.

Recent studies

Recent studies indicate that the results of roadside drug testing might not always prove accurate in nature. According to researchers, these tests involve a process in which substances believed to be illegal drugs are placed into a plastic pouch and mixed with chemicals. While the test is intended to produce a certain color when mixed with illicit drugs, studies indicate that similar results can be achieved with numerous types of substances, including certain household cleaners.

According to studies, courts have already overturned numerous convictions after further lab testing of substances that tested positive in roadside tests revealed that these substances were not illicit drugs. One testing facility asserts that researchers have identified over 50 types of substances that can prompt positive reactions in roadside drug tests. Studies also indicate that false positives can also result from a lack of training on the proper use of chemical testing kits.

Seeking advice on the options

While those who face drug charges under similar scenarios may wish to take every possible step to protect their futures, they might be uncertain of how best to approach the process. When facing similar challenges, a person in Massachusetts might benefit from retaining the services of an attorney for advice on his or her legal rights and available options. An attorney can help a client determine if questioning the accuracy of roadside drug tests might be a viable option and assist in preparing to safeguard his or her interests by creating a strong defense for use during court proceedings.

FindLaw Network