Florida justices hearing breath testing machine case

TALLAHASSEE - The Florida Supreme Court is hearing oral argument in a drunken driving appeal that could affect similar cases across the state.

Lawyers for three defendants on Tuesday are asking the justices to give them access to software for breath testing machines to help challenge their accuracy.

The defendants from Seminole County are appealing a ruling by the 5th District Court of Appeal.

The Daytona Beach-based appellate court quashed a trial judge's ruling for Kentucky-based CMI Inc. to turn over the software for its Intoxilyzer 8000.

The machine is the only breath tester certified by the state for use in Florida.

The decision conflicts with two other appellate rulings that allowed defendants to subpoena records from out-of-state companies. Prosecutors dropped charges in one of those cases that also involved the Intoxilyzer.

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