The consequences of driving while impaired in Georgia can impact your future by affecting your job, eligibility for a loan and receiving approval for a car or apartment lease. Understanding the methods used for challenging field sobriety test results may help you get the charges reduced or dismissed.
The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety reports that the standard field sobriety tests, which include the horizontal gaze nystagmus, walk and turn and one-leg stand, help identify impaired driving. However, these measures are frequently considered subjective.
Concern about SFST
The standardized tests administered by law enforcement require you to perform familiar tasks in an unfamiliar environment and manner. Few people are confident in such unusual circumstances. As a result, the chances of failing the tests increases. Officers have guidelines that help them detect impaired driving behavior and provide probable cause for stopping you, but many factors affect the accuracy of the tests.
Defenses against SFST
The results of SFSTs are frequently misinterpreted. Each test has valid challenges that could result in the dismissal of charges. Officers must perform the horizontal gaze nystagmus under certain conditions using specific processes. If the individual administering the test performs it incorrectly, you may have the results discounted.
The walk and turn test may reflect false-positive results for various reasons, including medical conditions, such as an inner ear infection, sinus issues or back or leg injuries. As a result of poor balance, standing easily on one leg at any time for many people is nearly impossible. Establishing a physical or mental condition that affects your balance in any way can help you successfully challenge the SFST results.