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If you are a suspected DUI driver in Virginia, police officers will ask you to perform one or more roadside field sobriety tests as part of their DUI / DWI investigation. Field sobriety tests are voluntary, and there is no penalty for refusing to perform them. Each DUI field sobriety test has specific ways in which it should be administered by the officer. The goal of most sobriety tests are to measure how well you can divide your attention among multiple tasks.
Virginia DUI Lawyer Bob Keefer has been certified as a Standardized Field Sobriety Test Instructor. He understands the science behind these tests, and knows how to measure the officer’s administration of the test to you, and your performance on the tests. Having an attorney skilled in these tests is an important element in building your defense against a Virginia DUI.
If you are asked to submit to these tests you should politely refuse to perform the tests. Virginia courts still allow officers to testify about your performance on the tests even if they incorrectly administer them. This violates the fundamental purpose of scientific testing which holds that the results of scientific experiments and tests are only valid if they are administered in exact accordance with proper protocols.
There are both standardized and non-standardized tests. The standardized tests are those that were scientifically validated by the federal government over 30 years ago. The non-standardized tests were not validated – even after extensive testing. Validation simply means that if the officer administers the test is the same exact manner in which they were created the officer will be able to tell within a percentage whether a person is impaired. It does not mean that the officer will be able to tell for certain whether you were intoxicated.
There are different defenses to each DUI field sobriety test. Some tests are not valid on people who have suffered head, neck, back, or leg injuries. Some tests are not valid for people who have diseases of the eyes. Still other tests are not valid for people who have attention deficit disorder, or other mental health issues, such as PTSD.
If you have been stopped or arrested for DUI or any crime, contact Virginia DUI lawyer Bob Keefer right now for a free, no obligation case evaluation.