Concluding Field Sobriety Testing & DUIs: Myths versus Facts (Part 1), below, we will discuss two additional common myths – and explain the facts – associated with field sobriety testing. Drivers who are aware of the facts behind these myths will have the best chances of protecting their rights if they are ever pulled over by cops and suspected of DUI. Being able to protect their rights from the get go can help people suspected of DUI build the strongest possible defense against these charges.
Myth 3: The tests used in field sobriety testing are always the same.
This is simply untrue. There are three tests that are considered to make up standard field sobriety testing (SFST, as developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration); SFST include the horizontal gaze nystagmus test, the walk-and-turn test and the one-leg stand test. However, in the field, police may request drivers to submit to any number of different tests in addition to SFST – such as saying the alphabet backwards, attempting different balancing poses, etc.
What this means is that, in practice, there is rarely a “standard” test that all police officers use and that specific tests used as part of on-the-scene field sobriety testing are often up to the cop’s discretion.
Myth 4: There are objective standards for judging whether someone has passed/failed field sobriety testing.
Given that police can use any number of different methods as part of field sobriety testing, it necessarily follows that there are not objective standards to test the “pass/fail” of these tests. In fact, what many drivers do not know is that judging field sobriety tests is stacked against the drivers; this is because, when drivers do something wrong on these tests, points are taken off, but when they do something right, points are not added back to their scores.
Because judging field sobriety testing is typically a subjective practice – and because making DUI arrests can be a huge money maker for cities, drivers should exercise their right to refuse this testing if they think that they may not “pass” it for any reason.
Denver DUI and Criminal Defense Attorney
If you or a loved one has been arrested for DUI, contact the trusted Denver DUI and criminal defense attorney at the Adams Law Firm. Once you retain the Adams Law Firm, Mr. Adams will begin investigating all of the facts and circumstances of your case. This includes visiting the scene of the accident and/or arrest, interviewing witnesses, and working to obtain and preserve any video evidence in your case.
Defending a criminal case in Colorado is complicated and requires great skill and training. Denver criminal defense attorney Jared Adams has extensive experience building the accused the strongest possible defense and is highly familiar the latest changes to criminal laws, making him an effective litigator both inside and outside of the courtroom. For years, Mr. Adams has been fiercely defending the rights of the accused and has been dedicated to helping Clients resolve their cases as advantageously as possible. To set up a free initial consult and learn more about your legal rights, call us at (720) 333-9490.