Texas Field Sobriety Tests


Did you know that unlike the breath and blood test, you can refuse to take a field sobriety test without receiving a separate ticket? Somehow, police officers always seem to miss telling you that. Police officers are not required to tell you that you don’t have to perform these tests.

How Can You Defend My Field Sobriety Tests?

I can challenge your testing based on many things. For example, did you even need to use the car for support when you got out of the car? Did the officer ask you if you have any injuries that could prevent you from doing the testing? If you have a back, knee leg or foot injury, perform the one leg stand and walk and turn can prove to be very difficult. Do you have balancing problems such as vertigo, middle ear problems? Were you wearing 2 inch heels or higher? Are you overweight or 65 years or older? All of these reasons can prevent you from performing well on your field sobriety tests.

One Leg Stand

In order for this test to be completed properly, the officer must tell you exactly what to do and also demonstrate this act for you. The one leg stand requires you to stand with your feet together and arms at your sides and keep that position until you are told to begin. The officer must ask if you understand and you must acknowledge that you do before beginning. You will then raise one leg six inches off the ground with your foot pointed out. The test can last no more than 3 seconds.

The officer will score you on swaying while balancing, using arms for balance, hopping and if you put your foot down. If you put your foot down 3 or more times, this is a fail.

Walk and Turn

This second standardized test requires that you place your left foot on a line in the road. Your right foot should be in front with the heel touching the toe of your left foot. Keeping your arms at your sides, you will take 9 heel-to-toe steps, turn and keep your foot on the line and walk back in the same manner.

The eight scoring factors of this test are: cannot keep balance while listening to instructions, starting before instructions are finished, stopping while walking, did not touch heel-to-toe, stepped off the line, used arms for balance, improper turn and incorrect number of steps.

HGN

The horizontal gaze nystagmus test required you to follow an object with your eyes only, without turning your head. The officer will look for an involuntary jerking of the eyes.

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