If suspected of intoxication and stopped by law enforcement, you may be asked by the officer to step out of your car and perform a field sobriety test. These are physical tasks to allegedly determine whether you are driving drunk and after which you can be arrested and charged with DUI. If you performed a field sobriety test and were subsequently arrested, you have a right to a legal defense and our Orlando DUI lawyer can fight on your behalf to protect your freedom!
When your future is being threatened by DUI charges, you want a legal team behind you who has the experience fighting criminal defense charges and the successful track record to go with it. Ali & Blankner has more than 80 years of combined legal experience and have been chosen for the list of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers and Top 40 Under 40 attorneys by The National Trial Lawyers.
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If you are arrested for DUI and fail or refuse any field sobriety exercise, such evidence may be used against you in court. The field sobriety exercise is actually made up of several small tests, which are standard in most states. These exercises are difficult to perform for the first time and usually occur with numerous cars passing by. In addition, there are usually numerous officers present observing the exercises and noting every mistake made. Below is a list of the more widely used exercises for DUI/BUI enforcement:
Tests such as these are only as valuable as the administrator and his skill in conducting the tests. While a law enforcement officer's opinion may be relatively unbiased, it is just that, an opinion open to challenge. If you have been charged with a DUI due to a field sobriety test, it is vital you consult an Orlando criminal defense attorney who will examine the results of your test for discrepancies or error.
There are generally three field sobriety tests law enforcement can ask you to perform when stopped on suspicion of DUI. These are the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN), the walk and turn, and the one leg stand. Even if you are accused of "failing" the test, you still have a right to challenge the results.
A sobriety test can be thrown out of court under any of these circumstances:
Any illness, allergy, or age-related condition can affect your performance on a field sobriety test. Any of these issues can be raised in your defense to challenge the results of your test in order to have them dismissed from court.
Field sobriety tests are far from scientific. In most cases, the officer has already made up their mind as far as whether they will arrest you before they ask you to perform a test. Taking a test will only give officers the excuse they need to make an arrest.
There are several non-standard tests police officers may direct a driver to perform and while they should not be refused, they certainly should be challenged by your attorney.
These non-standard tests can include:
Our Orlando DUI attorneys understand how to beat drunk driving charges based on field sobriety tests. We can bring up the very subjective nature of the tests to argue you were not intoxicated beyond the legal limit when you were stopped.
Most officers conducting these types of tests have already decided they will place you under arrest, and are merely looking for more evidence to use against you. It is under these circumstances that attorneys consider field sobriety tests inaccurate and employ their full resources to challenge them.
When you have been arrested and charged for DUI, and you have performed any of these field sobriety tests, it is vital to contact an Orlando DUI attorney who will successfully fight to preserve your rights and driving privileges.