'80's teen idol Rick Springfield was arrested last night on suspicion of Driving Under the Influence. Springfield was stopped after sheriff's deputies saw him speeding on Pacific Coast Highway in Los Angeles. He was driving a 1963 Corvette at the time. Springfield allegedly had a 0.10 blood alcohol level at the time he was tested.
When someone is arrested for DUI, they often have many questions like:
- What are field sobriety tests?
- Should I take field sobriety tests as directed by an officer, or should I refuse to take the field sobriety tests altogether?
Field sobriety tests are tasks that a police officer may ask you to perform at the time of arrest in order to help him or her determine if you are impaired. Some of these tests are standardized and others are considered non-standardized. The standardized field sobriety tests include the Walk and Turn, One Leg Stand, and Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus. Non-standardized field sobriety tests include saying the alphabet or counting backwards, Finger to Nose test, and standing feet together with arms out and head tilted slightly backward.
The standardized field sobriety tests are generally regarded as more reliable than the non-standardized tests. However, in many cases, even the standardized field sobriety tests may not an accurate assessment of a person's impairment. Field sobriety tests are very complex physical tasks. Many sober people cannot successfully perform these tests. In addition, the officer's evaluation of your performance on field sobriety tests can be very subjective.
There are many factors that can affect a person's performance on field sobriety tests, other than actual impairment. Things as simple as inappropriate footwear, an uneven roadway, loose gravel on the roadway, improper lighting and/or certain medical conditions can affect your performance on the Walk and Turn and One Leg Stand FST's. Holding the focal object (such as a pen) the wrong distance from the subject's face, improper lighting, performing the test while the flashing police lights, or certain eye conditions all can render a HGN test inaccurate.
Many people do not know that they can choose not to submit to field sobriety tests. But, it is perfectly legal to decline to participate in the tests. However, it is important to know that under Nevada's Implied Consent Law, if you refuse to submit to field a
preliminary breath test, the officer may elect to take your license, arrest you and/or take you to a place where you can be submitted to formal testing.
If you are arrested for DUI/DWI, it is important that you call a Las Vegas DUI Attorney
right away. A Las Vegas DUI lawyer can analyze the specific facts of your case, advise you regarding your rights, and effectively and aggressively defend you against a charge of Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Controlled Substance.