Being stopped on suspicion of drunk driving often means you are about to be subjected to a variety of tests. These can include field sobriety tests, breath tests, or even a blood draw. Although you have the right to refuse to submit to these tests, doing so can carry penalties, such as license suspension. Nevertheless, sometimes it can work in your favor to refuse.
In Mohave Valley, Arizona, a 57-year-old man refused field sobriety tests after appearing to lose control of his vehicle. His truck is said to have swerved into the opposite lane, narrowly escaping a collision with a deputy. When he exited his vehicle, police report that he seemed to be swaying. He admitted to having consumed four drinks. His blood alcohol concentration was also over the limit, measuring 0.178. As such, he was arrested on suspicion that he had been driving while under the influence of alcohol.
In his case, refusing the field sobriety test did not protect him from the arrest. However, if you feel that the results of your test could incriminate you, it may be preferable not to comply. Every situation is different and it is a call that only you can make. One thing to bear in mind is that if you are fatigued or suffering from a medical condition that affects your coherence or mobility, this could have a bearing on the tests you undergo.
Knowing your rights when faced with drunk driving charges can be the difference between being convicted or not. As such, it is vital to know where you stand and ensure that your side of the story is heard. An attorney can help you understand your options and support you in protecting your reputation and your future.
Source: Mohave Valley Daily News, "Community Watch," Oct. 15, 2014