Should I Submit to Field Sobriety Testing?
Anyone stopped under suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol is almost guaranteed to be asked by police to undergo certain tests. Field sobriety testing involves physical and verbal tests, such as walking a straight line, touching your nose, standing on one leg, reciting the alphabet or other tests to determine your sobriety.
You are not required to take them.
In fact, unlike refusal to undergo chemical testing, Arizona law imposes no penalties if you (politely) refuse to take the tests.
It should be noted, however, that the prosecution can mention your refusal in front of a jury, which could sway the court case under certain circumstances.
Your decision on whether to take or refuse a field sobriety test might be based on your expectations of the outcome of the tests.
When you know you are innocent
When you know for certain that you have not indulged in alcohol or drugs, you may decide to take the test. But, consider the following factors before you agree:
- If you have had even one drink, your ability to successfully pass the tests may be impaired
- If you have taken any prescription or over-the-counter medication, you may not pass the tests
- If you naturally lack coordination, or have any physical impairment, you could fail the test
In these and other situations, you may be legally able to operate a vehicle, even if you cannot successfully perform the tests.
Even if the results of the tests cannot be used in court, failing the tests can make the difference between your arrest and your release.
When you cannot predict the test results
If you have been drinking, even a small amount, or you have taken any type of medication, you are less likely to be able to anticipate a successful completion of the tests.
Your chances for release without arrest are likely to better by refusing the test and getting the assistance of a skilled local DUI attorney to help you at the police station.
The importance of an expert DUI attorney
Anyone charged with DUI is well advised to seek the help of a skilled local DUI attorney.
An attorney with experience defending DUI charges offers the best possible chances of not serving time in jail.
Thrush Law Group provides the compassionate, experienced legal support you need to get through the legal process.