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Drug dogs less reliable in traffic stop searches

Have you been arrested or charged with a drug crime? Even though the evidence against you may look bad that doesn’t mean you don’t have a chance of beating the charges. Investigators make mistakes, which is why anyone in the Fairfield County area facing drug charges should understand his or her rights.

Although drug-sniffing dogs are used to help investigators in the war on drugs, just like humans, dogs can make mistakes. In fact, according to a report that was recently published in the journal Forensic Science International, drug-sniffing dogs have the hardest time during traffic stop scenarios. Reportedly, these highly trained dogs committed false alerts 22 percent of the time when they had access to the outside of the vehicle.

The numbers were even more telling when the dogs were able to access the inside of the vehicles. According to the study by researchers in the United States and Poland, drug-sniffing dogs correctly identified the presence of drugs 58 percent of the time. Meanwhile, the number of false alerts jumped to 36 percent when dogs had access to the interior of the vehicle. Drug-sniffing dogs performed the best when they searched individual rooms in which they had previously been exposed to before a given search.

There are many different circumstances that can lead to a person being arrested for a drug crime. Even if a person is completely innocent, he or she should take the charges seriously. In fact, seeking the help and expertise of a criminal defense attorney is usually a very good idea for anyone in this situation.

Source: The Daily Chronic, “Drug dogs most likely to err in traffic stop scenarios,” Allen St. Pierre, Mar. 27, 2014

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