‘We’re putting people in prison based on expired technology,’ Oklahoma attorney on expired blood tests

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OKLAHOMA CITY -- A local attorney is concerned over countless expired blood test kits allegedly still being used by police.

It's a bold statement, but DUI Attorney John Hunsucker compared police using expired blood collection kits, to riding in a jet filled with expired jet fuel... he says both could mean the end of an innocent life.

"We're putting people in prison based on expired technology or expired equipment," Hunsucker said.

Police are allegedly using expired blood specimen collection kits, dating back to May of last year.

Hunsucker says the chemicals and the tube that collects the blood are fine... it's the seal made of rubber he's worried about.

"It's going to deteriorate. If that seal deteriorates, it's going to withdraw a different amount of blood," Hunsucker said.

He says if the ratio of chemicals to blood inside the tube don't match up, there could be a problem.

"If you have more salt in it, it could cause a higher alcohol ratio," Hunsucker said.

Kevin Behrens, Director of The Oklahoma Board of Tests for Alcohol and Arug Influence, said "Presumably if there's only a partial vacuum in there, it's only going to partially fill up with blood."

But he  says a smaller sample of blood doesn't change anything.

"When you look at their training bulletin, they say nevertheless to avoid unnecessary complications in the prosecution of cases involving the collection and testing of blood samples it's recommended that you obtain current blood tubes," Hunsucker said.

Behrens says there's nothing physically wrong with the kits yet. But he worries it could jeopardize a case in trial. That's why he's asking officers to get new kits.

"To avoid the issues in a judges and jury's minds about the expiration date," Behrens said.

Hunsucker said if that's the case, why not make new and unexpired testing kits mandatory?

"So why are we using them? Why are we excusing being lazy or poor performance in the field by a police officer because he's not using the correct kit. Why are we going to excuse that with peoples lives and their freedoms at stake," Hunsucker said.

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