Field Sobriety TestsDefending the Accused with Experience & Passion
Field Sobriety Tests
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When a highway patrol officer pulls someone over for suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI), they often need to collect more evidence before they can justify an arrest. To get that additional evidence, the go-to strategy is to tell the suspect to take a field sobriety test (FST). Even though an FST is proposed as a way to prove sobriety or intoxication, you should know they are skewed from the beginning to be out of your favor.
If you were arrested for a DUI after taking a field sobriety test, you can still challenge the charges and fight to save your driver’s license and freedoms. Connect with Fife Luneau, P.C. and our Denver attorneys right away. With thousands of DUI cases successfully managed throughout our years of experience, we are the first name in DUI defense for people throughout Colorado.
Start on your DUI defense case now. Contact our firm. We take calls 24/7.
Different Types of Field Sobriety Tests
A highway patrol officer will use a number of field sobriety tests to try to prove the suspect is intoxicated. All of them are heavily subjective, relying on the officer’s own discretion to reach a decision. This is not favorable for you.
Some of the most common field sobriety tests are:
- Walk a line: You will be instructed to carefully walk a straight line with your arms at your side and in an unnatural gait that puts one foot directly in front of the other. The test does not account for the fact that the ground could be slippery or uneven, like curbside dirt, which could make you stumble and appear intoxicated.
- Stand on one foot: The police officer will instruct you to stand delicately on one leg for an extended period of time, often up to an entire minute. People with physical debilitations may have a difficult time standing solidly on one leg, even when entirely sober.
- Horizontal gaze nystagmus test: The most notorious of all FSTs, the horizontal gaze nystagmus test involves the officer shining a light in your eyes and waving a pen in front of your face. You are told to follow the pen tip with just your eyes, and if your pupils shake or you cannot follow the pen closely, you will be accused of being intoxicated. There are clear problems with expecting someone’s eyes to behave normally in the presence of a bright light and a pointed object.
You Should Refuse Field Sobriety Test When Possible
Before you agree to take an FST, ask the officer if the test is mandatory or not. If the FST is not mandatory, you should be able to refuse it without immediate legal or administrative consequence. As aforementioned, such tests are skewed to prove intoxication, not sobriety, so it is often best to avoid them. Keep in mind that if you refuse any test deemed legally mandatory, your driver’s license will be automatically suspended regardless of the outcome of your DUI case.
Put a Fighter in Your Corner with Fife Luneau, P.C.
Trying to contest a DUI requires an in-depth knowledge of Colorado’s criminal laws and processes, especially if the prosecutors are leaning on evidence collected through field sobriety tests. You can move forward with your case and defend yourself confidently with our Denver DUI attorney. We have intentionally devoted the entirety of our law firm to DUI defense, so you know you can trust in our abilities to do the right thing for you.
The sooner we get to work on your case, the better. Call (720) 408-7130.
Fife Luneau, P.C. is one of the most respected law firms when it comes to DUI and criminal related cases. We have a remarkable track record up and down the Front Range, successfully handling some of the most complex cases.
- Acquitted of All Charges DUI Acquittal
- Dismissed Careless Driving
- Dismissed Careless Driving
- Dismissed Attempted Murder, Assault, Menacing with a Deadly Weapon, Distribution of Marijuana
- Dismissed Assault in the Third Degree (Domestic Violence)
How should I choose a Denver criminal defense attorney?A: First and foremost, your lawyer should be confident and knowledgeable in their practice. You should always feel comfortable with discussing the details of your situation and your freedom and your rights should be your counsel’s top priority. At Fife Luneau, P.C., our team has a true passion for what we do, and our experience and zealous advocacy is a testament to this. We have a proven track record for results and will always fight for your best interest.
How much are your legal fees?A: Fife Luneau, P.C. handles cases on an upfront flat-fee schedule that is determined based on how severe your charges, how complex the case, and whether you need to go to trial. We will discuss all issues with you beforehand, and once you agree to our fees, we’ll hold your money in a trust on your behalf. This way we can focus on your matter and not on money. Our firm also accepts all major credit cards.
After an arrest, what are my rights?A: Every U.S. citizen is granted certain rights by the Constitution. These include the face that you are innocent until proven guilty, and that burden is put on the prosecution. After you have been charged, you have the right to a public trial, skilled counsel of your choosing or a court-appointed lawyer, if needed, the right to remain silent to protect yourself from incrimination, the right to cross-examine the accused, the right to testify, or not, and the right to an appeal.