What could affect the results of a field sobriety test?

On Behalf of | May 31, 2016 | Drunk Driving Charges

Getting arrested and charged with a DUI may make it seem like your life is over, that everything is falling apart. It isn’t. There are many options available to you to defend yourself. Specifically, the police may have arrested you but that does not mean the evidence or information they relied upon can be used in court. Field sobriety tests look relatively easy on paper but out in the real world, problems can crop up that undermine their results. This post will go over those problems and how the results might be compromised.

Field sobriety tests rely on a lot of information to be accurate. The arresting officer must be trained in how to administer the test. The officer must give clear instructions. The officer must take notes regarding your body movements, eye movements, posture and other external markers.

But this does not address the circumstances of the investigation. For example, if the officer is testing you after a car accident, you could be injured or concussed and unable to complete the test. There are numerous reasons to explain a failed field sobriety test.

Furthermore, the test itself must be based upon scientific principles. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provides a standardized test but not all states follow it. If the test hasn’t been sufficiently vetted and established as reliable, the court may not allow it to be used in court.

If you are charged with a DUI/DWI, you may want to call a defense attorney as soon as possible. These charges, while manageable, are still very serious. While there are many avenues to undermine the reliability of field sobriety tests, you are still the one on the defensive. Moreover, if the officer conducted the test in a professional and reliable manner, then the results are valid evidence. A lawyer can go over your arrest with you to ensure that your rights were respected every step of the way.

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Charles Waechter | Lawyer.com Premium
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