Paramedics and EMTs are familiar with combative patients who are suffering from an episode of low blood sugar. One of the signs of low blood sugar can be extreme irritation, anger, physical aggression and failure to obey instructions.

The person in a state of diabetic crisis often does not remember their violent behavior. They can report feeling a sense of unreality. They are also often unable to speak or hear.

Police arrest a combative man

A local Florida news station reported on a retail store employee who called for police backup when a man on the floor refused to leave or stand up. A shopper recorded a video as four Florida police officers tried to arrest the combative man.

The police finally used force to subdue the customer and arrested him on a charge of battery after he allegedly assaulted an officer. The man, who had diabetes, told the news source he needed help; his blood sugar had dropped precipitously and he was in diabetic shock. After his police encounter, he said the officers had bruised his wrists and face. He is planning to hire an attorney. He claimed he blacked out at the cash register. Police are investigating the incident.

DUI charges and diabetes are connected

When a diabetic person's blood sugar drops, he or she can develop ketosis, a condition where the liver produces ketones when the blood sugar falls too low. Ketones in the person's breath can cause a false positive in a DUI breath test. Meanwhile, ketones continue to build up until they reach DKA or diabetic ketoacidosis. This condition is severely dangerous and can result in death.

Alcohol impairment and DKA share similar symptoms. It is not hard to understand why a police officer misunderstands the true reason for a driver's erratic movements. DKA can cause nausea, breath that smells like alcohol, confusion, slow reaction time, a flushed face and awkward coordination such as staggering.

Other conditions can cause false arrest

People who have taken sulfa drugs or are on low carbohydrate Keto diets may also receive a false positive DUI breath test. Other conditions that can cause a false positive include heart, kidney or liver conditions. Fasting and athletic overexertion may also fool the breath testing device.

Anyone arrested for a DUI who has a condition that is known to cause false positives may need to prove the association between DKA and a false positive breath test to avoid a DUI conviction. There are DUI expert witnesses who can fully explain the person's condition and the chemistry behind it. A person who is not guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol should use whatever defense is necessary to avoid a false criminal charge.

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