En Banc Rulings

En banc rulings under SMCLR 8.2.4

Having determined an issue to be of citywide significance per SMCLR 8.2.4, Seattle Municipal Court judges have issued the following en banc rulings:

Ruling on Draeger Motion (January 3, 2023)

The en banc panel ruled that the new Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 448-16-060 applied retroactively to alcohol breath tests performed on Draeger instruments before the WAC was changed. The court alternatively ruled that even if the WAC amendment did not apply retroactively, the difference in the method used by the Draeger and the method approved in the prior version of the WAC did not justify suppression of the breath tests. The court further ruled that the State Toxicologist’s actions in amending the WAC were not arbitrary and capricious and did not justify suppression of the tests.Therefore, the court denied the motion to suppress breath tests performed on the Draeger Alcotest 9510 on this basis. Cases consolidated for this motion will be set for status hearings on February 7, 2023.

Draeger Motion Ruling

Ruling In Re: Washington Toxicology Lab Contamination Motion (February 10, 2022)

Having determined this to be an issue of citywide significance per Local Court Rule 8.2.4, the Court held an en banc hearing on behalf of three cases on January 12-14, 2022: City of Seattle v. Christopher Markham, City of Seattle v. Paul Winters, and City of Seattle v. Erica Neace. The motion was heard by the Hon. Adam Eisenberg, the Hon. Anita Crawford-Willis, the Hon. Andrea Chin, and the Hon. Catherine McDowall. 

Per the following order signed February 10, 2022, the Court will suppress all blood toxicology results for amphetamine and methamphetamine if the tests were conducted by the Washington State Toxicology Lab in its Main Lab or the Annex between March 2018 and October 2021. This ruling does not affect tests for alcohol or any other drug.

In Re: Washington State Toxicology Lab Methamphetamine Contamination Motion

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