How Good Scottsdale DUI Attorneys Can Challenge Field Sobriety Test Results
Field Sobriety Tests Defenses
Field Sobriety Tests
Field Sobriety Tests are standardized tests adopted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). But many of the best Arizona DUI lawyers, who defend cases in Scottsdale regularly, consider them to be invalid tests which are often challenged. This is due to their subjective nature and police biases in reporting the results, of the driver they stopped for the Scottsdale DUI. Many AZ DUI charges are dismissed, evidence suppressed, charges reduced, or other favorable outcomes due to the results of FST challenged by an experienced AZ DUI Attorney who defends DUI charges in Scottsdale often and clearly knows how to challenge such evidence.
What Scottsdale Police Don’t Want You to Know
One thing Scottsdale Police do not usually tell you is that Field Sobriety Testing is not required under Arizona Law. You have the right to refuse. Some of the best AZ DUI attorneys disagree on whether or not you should refuse the FST. The reason it is controversial is because if you decline, the Scottsdale police may arrest you and take you into custody on the spot. It just depends on the situation, and the police officer’s justification of probable cause for arrest. Some DUI Attorneys will advise you to take the tests and then DUI Attorney defending your Scottsdale DUI charge, challenge the results after the fact, through the proper legal channels. The choice is yours. You should consider your circumstances at the time of the stop.
FST results are determined by the Scottsdale police officer conducting the FST. The FST is the least reliable of any Scottsdale DUI evidence that they will attempt to use to convict you of your Scottsdale DUI. It is unfortunate, but Scottsdale Police have been known to intentionally make it sound like you did poorly on the tests, when in fact you did as good as or better than someone unimpaired on drugs or alcohol. The Scottsdale Police want arrests. Scottsdale Court and prosecutors want convictions.
However the fact is that studies have shown that even persons unimpaired by drugs or alcohol may perform “poorly” depending on many factors which include but are not limited to stress, intimidation, motor skill capability, work related fatigue, medical impairments and many other factors. This is another good reason why they are often challenged by experienced DUI Lawyers who defend cases in Scottsdale frequently. The actual purpose for the FST is to use it as a preliminary resource, for the officer to make a decision as to whether or not additional DUI or Drug testing is needed. It is not intended nor can it be used as the only evidence to convicting of a Scottsdale DUI. Despite this however, the Gilbert Court and Prosecution will attempt to place more emphasis on the FST evidence if the police report that you performed poorly on the FST.
Below are a sample of arguments for Field Sobriety Tests to be challenged and used as defenses taken from “101 DUI Defense Strategies” © Winning Arizona DUI Defense Strategies © Book to give you an idea of a few defense strategies a good Arizona DUI defense Attorney may use to defend your case by active winning defense Attorney and author James Novak:
• YOU WERE AT A DISADVANTAGE OF PERFORMING THE TESTS ACURATELY DUE TO UNFAVORABLE ROADSIDE CONDITIONS WHICH MAY INVOLVE SUCH THINGS AS INCLIMATE WEATHER, HEAVY TRAFFIC, UNLEVEL GROUND, OR OTHER ENVORNMENTAL OR LANDSCAPING ASPECTS THAT WOULD ADVERSELY IMPACT THE RESULTS.
• ACCORDING TO MEDICAL EXPERTS, THE HORIZONTAL GAZE NYSTAGMUS (HGN) IS NOT A SCIENTIFICALLY VALID TEST UNDER ROADSIDE CONDITIONS. THE TEST MUST BE PERFORMED UNDER MEDICALLY REQUIRED STANDARDS AND CONDITIONS THAT ARE SIMPLY NONEXISTENT IN A ROAD SIDE ENVIORNMENT. ONE EXAMPLE IS STRICT LIGHTING SPECIFICATIONS.
• THE POLICE TESTED YOU DISPITE THE FACT THAT YOU WERE AN INAPPROPRIATE CANDIDATE FOR AN FST ACCORDING TO NHTSA STANDARDS. SOME ISSUES THAT MAY DISQUALIFY A PERSON FROM BEING A CANDIDATE FOR SUCH TEST ARE WEIGHT RESTRICTIONS, MEDICAL IMPAIRMENTS OR CONDITIONS, SUCH AS BALANCE, HEART, OR ARTHRITIC PROBLEMS, ADVANCED AGE, AND MANY OTHER MEDICAL CONDITIONS OR FACTORS THAT MAY CONTRIBUTE TO INACCURATE OR POOR RESULTS.
• FIELD SOBRIETY TESTS NOT RECOGNIZED BY NHTSA ARE INVALID AND CAN NOT BE HELD AGAINST YOU.
• THE POLICE OFFICER LEFT OUT FROM THE POLICE REPORT THE LOCATION AND ROADSIDE CONDITIONS WHERE THE FST WAS ADMINISTERED AT THE TIME OF THE TESTING.
• AS A RESULT OF YOUR REFUSAL TO SUBMIT TO THE FST, THE POLICE CONCLUDED THAT YOU REFUSED BECAUSE YOU FEARED YOU WOULD DO POORLY BECAUSE YOU WERE IMPAIRED BY DRUGS OR ALCOHOL.
• YOU PERFORMED POORLY BECAUSE YOU WERE FEELING OVERWELMED BY THE ORDEAL, NERVIOUS, INTIMIDATED, MISTREATED, OR ABUSED BY THE POLICE OFFICER (S).
• THE POLICE INCORRECTLY ADVISED YOU, THAT THE FST WAS MANDATORY OR REQUIRE BY ARIZONA LAW.
These are just a few arguments of many that an AZ DUI Attorney can use to challenge the Field Sobriety Test results that lead to your Scottsdale DUI charges. You should consult a good Scottsdale DUI attorney who defends DUI cases frequently. FST is just one of many areas of multitudes of issues surrounding your DUI that can be challenged in an effort for your Attorney to fight to get your Scottsdale DUI dismissed, charges reduced, evidence suppressed or the otherwise best possible outcome in your case.
If you have been charged with any Scottsdale Arizona DUI, Extreme DUI, Repeat Offense DUI, Under age 21 DUI, DUI with child under 15 in vehicle, Aggravated Felony DUI, Drug, Felony Drug, Dangerous Drug, Narcotics, Marijuana, any Arizona DUI, Arizona, Arizona Drug DUI, or any other criminal charge including theft, assault, aggravated assault, domestic violence, drugs crimes, probation violations, robbery, computer crimes, ID theft crimes, or any other criminal charges contact the Law Office of James Novak, for your Free Consultation at (480) 413-1499. Speak directly with experienced Arizona Criminal Defense and Scottsdale DUI Defense Attorney and James Novak (Former Prosecutor).