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Refusal of Field Sobriety Tests in Greenwich

A popular misconception is that people must consent to field sobriety tests during traffic stops. That is untrue. You do not have to comply with the field sobriety or any SFSTs. Refusal of field sobriety tests in Greenwich is your right, and by refusing to do so, you give the police less data and less evidence to help them form their probable cause opinion.

At the same time, it is important to consider that there are consequences for refusing to do the tests. For example, if you pass the field test, that is helpful to you. If you fail them, that gives the police more evidence or probable cause. It is always good to try to call a skilled DUI lawyer to ask for advice, although officers often do not allow people to call their attorneys until they arrive at the station. Regardless, a lawyer could fight for a positive outcome for you.

What Happens if a Person Refuses to Consent to Testing?

The field sobriety tests are designed to provide cues to the officer that a driver has been operating the vehicle under the influence of alcohol. There are other ways for an officer to develop probable cause besides those tests; they are just a tool that the officer can use. A person could still be arrested, regardless of their refusal of field sobriety tests in Greenwich. If the field sobriety is not administered correctly or there was some unfair element about what was going, that could be used as a defense in a person’s case to show that they were not drunk. The tests were not given according to standard and thus, they are no good.

The tests are called standard tests because they are meant to be given in a very specific manner and in a very particular sequence. Studies show that the tests are not a 100 percent reliable. They are very reliable when done in the very specific way and in a very specific order. When there is any deviation from that, the test becomes unreliable.

Examples of Common Field Sobriety Exercises

The three standard field sobriety tests are the horizontal gaze nystagmus test, the walk-and-turn test, and the one-legged stand. The horizontal gaze nystagmus test is designed to allow the officer to check if a person’s eyes display jerkiness as they follow the pen light with their eyes.

More jerkiness of the eyes, according to this test, indicates that a person has a higher blood alcohol content. The walk-and-turn test is designed to see if a person can divide their attention. The one-legged stand test is designed to test a person’s balance and is another divided attention test because the person is counting while balancing.

If someone does take the tests and they have some medical conditions such as arthritis, a surgery, any history of medical conditions concerning their balance, their legs, or their ears, the individual should let the police know and make sure that that information is included in their police report.

Speaking With a Greenwich DUI Attorney

If you have any questions about the refusal of sobriety tests in Greenwich and how it could affect your case, speak with a skilled DUI lawyer. Your attorney could go through your rights and responsibilities with you and fight for a positive outcome for you.