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Their Little Secret: Field Sobriety Tests Are Not Mandatory

Police use field sobriety tests to determine if someone they stopped is under the influence of an intoxicating substance. If they suspect you have been drinking or taking drugs, they might ask you to take the tests. There is one thing that they won’t tell you — the tests are not mandatory. Test results give them evidence. If they suspect you were drinking, they are likely to arrest you anyway. If you don’t take a breathalyzer test, they will have less evidence against you. If you have questions, call Meaney & Patrin, P.A..

They Probably Will Try To Intimidate You

They will try to intimidate you too. They might ask why you don’t want to take field sobriety tests. Ignore the threats. Field sobriety tests are not required. They can legally give you the blood, urine and breath tests once you are arrested.

What They Look For:

  • Horizontal gaze: They are looking for involuntary eye jerking and making sure your eyes can follow an object.
  • Walk-and-turn test: You will be asked to walk a straight line while following instructions. They are making sure you can keep your balance, follow instructions, touch heel to toe, see if you use arms to balance and take the correct number of steps.
  • One-leg stand: You will be asked to stand on one leg and maintain the weight of your body. They are watching for swaying, hopping to maintain balance or putting the foot down.

The field sobriety tests give them more evidence even if you register blood alcohol content of at least .08 (the legal limit) on the breath, blood or urine tests.

We Can Help You Legally Challenge Test Results

We have helped clients successfully challenge test results in a variety of ways, including:

  • Improper administration of tests: Did the arresting officer administer the tests correctly and followed the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s guidelines?
  • Poor testing conditions: Were you asked to perform the tests on an uneven surface, in a poorly lit area or in bad weather?
  • Physical or mental disabilities: Mental and physical impediments can alter results.

We will work with you to challenge their evidence. Results vary. We cannot guarantee your outcome, but we will check the evidence to make sure it was legally obtained, with no problems or if there are loopholes. Call us at 612-688-2299 or email us.