You work in the Emergency Room at Inova Fair Oaks Hospital and just got off a grueling 12-hour shift. It was the weekend, which means you were extremely busy and had seen many complicated cases. By the time you get in your car to leave, you look like you just went through a battle, and can barely keep your eyes open.
As you were driving down I-395 to get home, you spotted the flashing red, blue, and white lights of a police officer in your rearview mirror. He walks up to the side of your vehicle and asks if you have been drinking. You haven’t, but after looking at your tired eyes and hearing your drowsy speech, he asks you to get out of the vehicle and perform a field sobriety test.
How Field Sobriety Tests Can Be Flawed
It’s cold, it’s late, and you’re on the side of a busy road. Your nerves are shot and you’re scared, but the officer wants you to perform these tests. The ugly truth is, you’ll probably fail due to a variety of reasons. The following are a few examples:
- The testing area is sloped. You would be hard-pressed to find a road shoulder in Fairfax that is in perfect condition and completely flat. Most shoulders have divots and slopes, making standing on one leg and performing other field sobriety tests difficult. The officer may interpret your trouble with performing the test due to the road conditions as intoxication.
- Your appearance. Lack of sleep may cause you to have bloodshot eyes and your nerves can make you act differently than normal. The officer will likely use these innocent traits against you, saying they are the result of intoxication.
- Complex instructions are given in a short amount of time. Because of your fatigue and the masses of loud vehicles zooming by you while you stand on the road shoulder, it could cause difficulty understanding what the officer is saying as he explains the tests to you. As a result, you may perform them incorrectly and end up going to jail.
The Easley Law Firm Wants to Fight for You
We understand the injustice you are facing right now and want to help. Contact us today to find out how.