Posts tagged "1019417"

Commonwealth v. Camblin (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-194-17)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030;   SJC-11774   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  KIRK P. CAMBLIN.       Middlesex.     September 7, 2017. – December 8, 2017.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Lenk, Gaziano, Budd, Cypher, & Kafker, JJ.     Motor Vehicle, Operating under the influence.  Evidence, Breathalyzer test, Scientific test.       Complaint received and sworn to in the Ayer Division of the District Court Department on April 28, 2008.   Following review by this court, 471 Mass. 639 (2015), a motion to exclude evidence as scientifically unreliable was heard by Mark A. Sullivan, J.     Andrew W. Piltser Cowan for the defendant. Casey E. Silvia, Assistant District Attorney (Cyrus Y. Chung & Laura S. Miller, Assistant District Attorneys, also present) for the Commonwealth.     Gaziano, J.  In Commonwealth v. Camblin, 471 Mass. 639, 640, 651 (2015) (Camblin I), we remanded this case to the District Court to conduct a hearing on the scientific reliability of a particular model of breathalyzer, the Alcotest 7110 MK III-C (Alcotest), while retaining jurisdiction of the case.  After conducting a Daubert–Lanigan hearing, a District Court judge found that the Alcotest was capable of producing scientifically reliable breath test results, and denied the defendant’s motion to exclude this evidence at his trial for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.  See Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharms., Inc., 509 U.S. 579 (1993) (Daubert); Commonwealth v. Lanigan, 419 Mass. 15 (1994).  The judge returned his findings to this court, and both sides filed supplemental briefing, prior to renewed oral argument before us.  The defendant now contends that the judge abused his discretion in finding that the Alcotest satisfies the Daubert–Lanigan standard for the admissibility of scientific evidence.  We conclude that there was no abuse of discretion and affirm the denial of the defendant’s motion to exclude the Alcotest results. Background.  a.  Prior proceedings.  In 2008, a District Court complaint issued charging the defendant with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of liquor (OUI), in violation of G. L. c. 90, § 24 (1) (a) (1).  Before trial, the defendant moved to exclude admission of breath test evidence generated by the Alcotest; he argued that errors in the device’s computer source code, and other deficiencies, rendered its results unreliable.[1]  A District Court judge denied the defendant’s motion without conducting a Daubert–Lanigan hearing.  The judge determined that because the Alcotest utilizes infrared spectroscopy technology, and […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - December 8, 2017 at 3:24 pm

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