Fort Lauderdale Field Sobriety Exercises Attorney
In Fort Lauderdale, if a police officer suspects you are driving under the influence and pulls you over, they may ask you to perform field sobriety exercises (FSEs). During the exercises, the officer will look for signs of impairment, which will give them probable cause to arrest you. It is important to know that you are not legally required to carry out these exercises. If you already have and the officer arrested you as a result, it is crucial that you speak to our Fort Lauderdale field sobriety exercises attorney today.
Field Sobriety Exercises: The Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) Test
During the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) test, you will have to follow a small object, typically a flashlight or pen, with your eyes. The officer will hold the object and move it from left to right and up and down. The test is designed to allow the officer to detect nystagmus, or a jerking or moving of the eye. Nystagmus is an indication that a driver is impaired, but there are other reasons for it, as well. People that have suffered from a brain tumor, stroke, multiple sclerosis, or impaired vision may experience nystagmus even when they are not under the influence.
Field Sobriety Exercises: The One-Leg Stand Test
The one-leg stand test requires you to lift one leg off the ground at a height of about six inches from the ground. You must also count to 30 at the same time. If you lower your foot, put your arms out, or otherwise appear unbalanced, the officer will likely assume that you are intoxicated. People that are overweight, have inner ear problems, a disability, and senior citizens find this test very difficult to take. The lighting in the area, and the smoothness or roughness of the surface are also factors in the difficulty of the test.
Field Sobriety Exercises: The Walk and Turn Test
The walk and turn test is also harder than it sounds. You will have to walk a certain number of steps, heel-to-toe, before turning around and walking back in the same manner. The officer will watch to determine if you can keep your balance, follow instructions, and walk in a straight line. Similar to the one-leg stand test, the surface and lighting in the area all play crucial roles in whether you pass or fail this test.
Field Sobriety Exercises: Other Tests
In addition to the main three field sobriety tests, an officer may ask you to perform other exercises, as well. For example, they may ask you to count backwards or recite the alphabet. Sometimes, police officers drag out these exercises in an effort to exhaust drivers, which could give the officer reasonable cause to arrest them.
Call Our Fort Lauderdale Field Sobriety Exercises Attorney Now
If your rights have been violated and you have been arrested after performing field sobriety tests, call for legal help right away. At Meldon Law, our Fort Lauderdale field sobriety exercises attorney will help restore your rights and defend against any charges against you. Call us today at 800-373-8000 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.