Defense against a DUI arrest can begin with flawed field sobriety tests. In fact, sometimes sober people can fail tests designed to determine if a driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Keeping notes on every aspect of your arrest can help you unfold how you might have been mistakenly for a drunk driver. Listing disadvantages that you faced or your preexisting health conditions can help you figure out if your arrest shouldn’t have taken place.
Poor testing conditions
Police officers often ask suspected drunk drivers to step outside of their vehicles and perform tests. This includes the walk and turn test, which requires testers to walk in a straight line, and the one-leg stand test, which requires suspects balance on one foot. But if you are wearing footwear meant to be stylish and not support balance or the pavement on the shoulder of the road is rocky, then you could show poor coordination — a sign of impairment.
Health or medication effects
There are many health conditions and medications that can also impact your ability to successfully complete sobriety tests. For example, antibiotics and antidepressants can both cause dizziness. And anything from a traumatic brain injury to a common headache can cause balance problems too. Stress about the police encounter or a history of anxiety or PTSD can also shadow one’s test performance.
The officer might not provide clear instructions from the start of the test, which can cause someone who’s below the legal limit to mess up. For instance, the standard walk and turn test requires suspects to take only nine steps before turning. But if a police officer doesn’t specify this, then the test-taker might only take seven steps which could give the officer the go-ahead to move onto further tests or complete the arrest.
If you believe your drunk-driving arrest is unjust, then a criminal defense attorney can help you fight your case.