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Name: People v. Chikosi
Case #: G041014
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 06/06/2010
Subsequent History: rev. granted 8/11/10 (S184190)
Summary

Breathalyzer maintenance records are not hearsay such that the right of confrontation is violated without testimony from the officer who tested the accuracy of the machine. The defendant gave two breath samples on the Alco-Sensor IV XL and the officer who administered the test also testified that he relied on machine accuracy records that are electronically recorded and stored. Hand written maintenance logs corresponded to the electronic files and showed the machine was tested one day before and five days after the defendant’s test. Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts (2009) 557 U.S. __ [129 S.Ct. 2527, 174 L.Ed.2d 314] determined that information contained in laboratory reports may constitute testimonial hearsay. However, the opinion noted in dicta that documents prepared in the regular course of equipment maintenance may well qualify as nontestimonial records. The reports in this case were produced contemporaneously with the machine’s calibration tests and produced neutral information relating only to the proper operation. They were not generated to establish a past fact relevant to the defendant’s prosecution, and thus were not testimonial hearsay.