Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFSTs)
When the officer asks you step out of your vehicle he may ask you to perform
physical tests to help him determine if you are sober, intoxicated,
or impaired by alcohol.
These tests include the 9-Step Walk and Turn Test, the One Leg
Stand, and Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus. Some officers may choose to
administer additional tests, including asking to you blow into a
pre-screening device, recite the alphabet, pick up coins, or touch
your finger to your nose.
SFST’s are divided attention tests designed to test your
ability to understand instructions, follow those instructions, and
perform mental and physical tasks simultaneously. These tests are
not reliable indicators of a person’s ability to operate a
motor vehicle. Especially, while you are standing on the side of
the road, with a police officer barking orders, cars are whizzing
past you and police lights flashing in your eyes.
Remember that these tests, at best, are only as good as the officer
who administers them. If the officer does not perform the test correctly,
the test is invalid as well as the results. Only an experienced
and skilled attorney in handling a DWI case will know whether the
test is performed correctly and how to discredit the officer’s
testimony regarding your performance on those tests.
If you or a loved one is in need of legal assistance, call DerGarabedian, Nathan, Marino & Rodriguez at (516) 766-1619 or schedule
a consultation and review. The initial
consultation is free of charge.