Field Sobriety Tests

Field Sobriety Tests Used In DUI Detection

One Leg Stand

If the officer decides there is reasonable suspicion to believe you are impaired, he will ask you if you will agree to take Field Sobriety Tests.

These are standardized tests, including:

  • The Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN), where the officer tries to determine if there is an involuntary jerking in your eyes by asking you to follow a stimulus (pen or penlight).
  • The Walk and Turn, where the officer has you listen to his complicated instructions and then asks you to walk on an imaginary line, heel to toe, for nine steps one way and nine steps the other.
  • The One-Leg Stand, where the officer has you stand for thirty seconds with one foot raised six inches off the ground, while counting.

There are specific requirements that the officer must follow and specific factors he is to consider when determining if your performance shows impairment.

You Do Not Have To Perform These Tests.

I recommend that my clients not take the tests. These are very subjective and if the officer has decided to give you the tests, he will be able to find enough mistakes to justify an arrest. If you look bad – even if for reasons other than being impaired – e.g. medical issues, problems with balance, overweight, nervousness – then the video of these tests will be used against you to get a conviction.

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