When a police officer stops a motorist due to suspicion of driving under the influence in Florida, the officer may conduct a field sobriety test to judge whether the driver is intoxicated. Refusing to take the test could potentially be used against you if the matter later goes to trial. Since the consequences of a Florida DUI can be so severe, it is vital that you consult with an experienced Gainesville DUI lawyer for guidance when faced with this charge.
What exactly is a field sobriety test? The following is an overview of three common field sobriety tests that are used by Florida police officers:
1. Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test – This test involves the police officer watching the suspect’s eyes as they follow a slowly moving object. Officers will often use a small flashlight while conducting the exam.
2. One Leg Stand Test – During this exam, the officer has the suspect stand with his feet together and arms at his sides. Next, the suspect is told to raise one foot approximately six inches off the ground while keeping his raised foot parallel to the ground. Finally, the suspect must stare at the raised foot and begin counting until the officer says to stop.
3. The Walk and Turn Test – In this field sobriety test, the arresting officer asks the suspect to stand heel-to-toe with his arms at his sides. Next, the suspect is instructed to take 9 heel-to-toe steps forward, in a straight line, and then turn around on one foot and take steps in the opposite direction.
If you have been charged with a DUI in Florida, contact an experienced Gainesville DUI attorney today. Be sure to ask for a copy of our free guide: A DUI Guide for Alachua County, which offers information about ways to potentially avoid a conviction. To learn more about DUI’s, Call the Law Office of Jeffrey Meldon & Associates at their toll free number, (800) 373-8000.