DUI-Field Sobriety Exercises
You had two drinks after work. You have no doubt you’re below .08. You’re driving home. You’re stopped by law enforcement for a blown tail light. What happens now?
It’s important that you give the officer your driver’s license, insurance card and current address. If he or she smells alcohol or thinks your speech is slurred, you may be requested to take a field sobriety test. If you refuse, you can be taken to jail, where you will immediately call your lawyer.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has developed a Standardized Field Sobriety Test that is a battery of three tests used by Law Enforcement for individuals suspected of Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs (DUI). These tests were developed based on established indicators of impairment to provide probable cause for an arrest:
Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus
Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus is an involuntary jerking of the eye that that occurs naturally as the eyes gaze to the side. An alcohol or other chemically impaired person often has difficulty smoothly tracking a moving object. The officer slowly moves a pen, finger or small flashlight horizontally in front of a person’s eyes for the person to follow. How smoothly the person tracks the object, where in the process any jerkiness in the eye is distinct and at what angle the eyes are in when the jerking begins are all considerations in the evaluation.
Walk and Turn is the proverbial “straight line.” This component requires a person to take nine steps heel-to-to in a straight line, turn on one foot and return to the starting point in the same manner. Not only is a person’s balance being studied, but the ability to follow directions, use of proper form, using or not using arms for balance, and similar indicators are used in the assessment.
One-Leg Stand requires the person to stand with one foot approximately six inches off the ground and simultaneously count aloud. Counting begins with one thousand-one, one thousand-two, etc., and goes on for 30 seconds until the officer instructs the person to stop and lower the foot. Balancing without swaying, hopping, using arms or putting the foot down is important.
Good People Do Get Arrested. That’s why if you are charged with DUI, you need to call us. Here at Scott T. Moorey, Attorneys-At-Law, we are available 24/7. Schedule your free initial legal consultation and meet with either Scott Moorey or Lance Dunford, both skilled criminal defense attorneys with Fort Myers roots.