Field sobriety tests have always been a bad indicator of intoxication. There are obviously telltale signs of inebriation, but roadside sobriety testing isn’t the ultimate solution to accurately spot impaired drivers. They may be approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and based on years of research, but even the law enforcement couldn’t deny certain flaws of such tests.
Utahns always wonder if refusal to perform these tests is possible when asked by an officer. The answer is a big “yes”, and here are the reasons:
You Don’t Have To
These tests are not mandatory. Nobody could force you to walk a straight line or stand on one leg just to gauge if you have enough blood alcohol concentration in your system to merit an arrest. Even if you’re sober, confident to pass, or physically coordinated, doing any of the tests would do you more harm than good.
They Lean Toward Failure
Any experienced DUI lawyer in Provo, Spanish Fork, or Sandy would agree that field sobriety testing is a trap. An alcohol-free system is not enough to do well on these tests; on the contrary, many factors might affect your performance and cause you to botch the tests.
From clothing to physical or mental impairments, a number of non-alcohol – related elements could set a sober Utahn for failing sobriety testing.
Doing Well Might Lead to an Arrest Anyway
Before you consider taking the tests, you should know the officer has most likely made his or her mind about the arrest. In many cases, police officers are merely just looking for a probable cause or additional supporting evidence to justify your arrest.
If you take them, you would almost certainly fail and get arrested. If you refuse, the officer would think you are hiding something and still arrest you.
Field sobriety testing may be the least reliable way to tell if you are driving under the influence, but it’s a reality. Whether you take or refuse the test, you must consult an experienced attorney either way.