If a Police Officer Asks You to Take a Field Sobriety Test What Should You Do?
Although every traffic stops is unique, stops that are based on a suspicion that the driver has been drinking and driving tend to follow the same basic pattern. Therefore, if you are ever stopped for driving while intoxicated in New there is a good chance the officer will eventually ask you to perform a series of field sobriety tests, or FSTs. If a police officer asks you to take a field sobriety test what should you do? Ultimately, only you can make that decision; however, a better understanding of FSTs as well as how they are used may help you make that decision.
During a typical traffic stop wherein the officer is suspicious that the motorist has been driving while intoxicated, or DWI, the officer will begin by asking the driver simple questions. This allows the officer the time needed to form an opinion as to whether or not the driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If the officer remains or becomes suspicious, the officer will usually ask the driver to perform some field sobriety tests. The FSTs are used to judge a motorist's coordination, balance, and memory skills at the time. An officer could use a wide variety of FSTs; however, the three standardized FSTs include:
- Walk and turn - requires a driver to walk, heel to toe, nine steps and then turn around and walk back.
- One leg stand – requires the driver to stand on one leg with arms down for a count of 30 seconds.
- HGN – looks for horizontal gaze nystagmus, or "twitching" in the eye which serves as a sign of alcohol or drug impairment.
Although the standardized FSTs have specific instructions and guidelines for determining if a motorist passed the test or not, at the end of the day the officer conducting the test makes a subjective determination whether or not the driver passed or failed the test. Because there are so many factors that can cause a motorist to fail the FSTs (including nerves alone), it is rare that a driver is released to go on about his or her way after performing FSTs. In summary, taking a field sobriety test rarely does anything more than provide an officer with additional evidence used to make an arrest.
If you have been charged with a criminal offense in the State of New York it is important that you consult with an experienced New York criminal defense attorney right away to evaluate your case and get started on your defense. Contact the Law Offices of Adam Thompson today by calling (212)267-2424 to schedule your appointment.
Arrested? Hurt in Accident?
Get Help 24/7
- Am I Allowed to Represent Myself in My New York DWI Case? Why Should I Hire an Attorney?
- Can I Do a Treatment Program in New York City?
- Can I Use Mouthwash to Avoid DWI in New York City?
- Can the Police Search Your Home Without a Warrant in New York?
- Do You Know Your Rights?
- Do You Need a Lawyer before You're Charged?
- DWI Stop -- How Do I Respond When Asked If I Have Been Drinking?
- Free Report: Who will be on the Jury for my Criminal Jury Trial in New York?
- Free Report: Are You Eligible for Drug Court in New York?
- Free Report: Constructive Possession in New York - What It Is and Why It Matters
- Holiday DWI Checkpoints in New York
- How Can I Get Evidence Thrown Out or Suppressed in New York?
- How Can You Defend Someone You Know Is Guilty?
- How Long Can I Go to Jail for Selling Drugs in New York?
- How Much Will a DWI Lawyer Cost in New York City?
- How Often Do Medical Errors Occur?
- If a Police Officer Asks You to Take a Field Sobriety Test What Should You Do?
- I Was Caught Smuggling Drugs – Will I Go to Federal Prison?
- I Was Notified of a Probation Violation Hearing in New York. Do I Need an Attorney?
- My Lawyer Told Me to Refuse the Chemical Test in New York, Is that Right?
- New York Construction Sites Accidents: Fatalities and Safety Violations [Infographic]
- Penalties for Alcohol and Drug-Related Driving Violations in New York [infographic]
- Should I Take a Breathalyzer Test in New York?
- Should I Talk to the Police or Prosecutor after I am Arrested in New York or New Jersey?
- The Crime of Rape in the State of New York
- Top Five Mistakes Defendants Make in a New York DWI Case
- Types of Medical Errors
- What Are Pre-Trial Hearings?
- What Are the Penalties for Possession or Sale of Marijuana in New York?
- What Are the Possible Defenses to a DWI Charge?
- What Are the Possible Defenses to New York Sex Crimes Charges?
- What Are the Possible Defenses to the Sale of Drugs in New York?
- What Are the Possible Penalties for Drug Possession in New York?
- What Are the Possible Penalties for DWI in New York?
- What Behavior and Patterns the Police Look for When Searching Out Intoxicated Drivers
- What If the Police Didn't Read Me My Rights before Arresting Me for DWI in New York?
- What Is a Line-Up and Show Up?
- What Is a Misdemeanor DWI in New York City?
- What Is an Arraignment In New York?
- What Is an Illegal Search in New York?
- What Is a Search and Seizure in New York?
- What Is a Sentence Enhancement in New York?
- What Is a Wrongful Death Case?
- What Is Boating While Intoxicated in New York?
- What Is Constructive Possession?
- What Is the HGN Test?
- What Is the Officer Looking For When the Officer Asks Me to Follow a Pen Light?
- What Is the Punishment for Possession of Cocaine in New York City?
- What Is the Punishment for Possession of Oxycodone in New York City?
- What Takes Place at a Criminal Trial?
- Who Will Be on the Jury for My Criminal Jury Trial in New York?
- Will I Be Drug Tested in Court in New York?
- Appeal Case
- Auto Cases
- Civil Rights Cases
- Construction/ Negligence Cases
- Criminal Defense Cases
- Employment Case
- Environmental Case
- Slip, Trip and Fall Cases