Attacking WI DUI Field Sobriety Tests
If you are suspected of Wisconsin Drunk Driving, a police officer will request you perform WI Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFST). These tests are usually performed roadside or a location that has a smooth, flat surface. Two of the three SFSTs are balance tests.
Fighting WI DUI Balance Tests
There are three Standardized Field Sobriety Tests. Two of them rely on the subjects ability to walk and maintain balance. The two balance tests for suspected WI Drunk Drivers are the Walk and Turn and the One-Leg Stand. Each test is performed in two stages, the instructional stage and the physical act of performing the test. These tests are known as divided attention tests. An experienced WI DUI Defense Attorney will know the how to perform the tests together with the cues taken into account by a Wisconsin police officer.
Understanding the WI Walk and Turn Test (WAT)
The first stage of the walk and turn test is to position the driver standing with one foot in front of the other (left in front, right behind) while listening to the instructions of the test. The second stage of this test is the driver performing the instructions of taking nine steps forward in a straight line (physical or imaginary), making a special pivoting left turn, and taking nine steps back to the starting point. The driver is also instructed to count these steps out loud. The police officer will look and listen for cues during both stages, including balance during the instructional phase and whether the driver begins the test before instructed to do so. Other cues for intoxication during the test include stepping off the line, balance issues, making a turn other than how instructed, and miscounting the steps.
Understanding the WI One-Leg Stand Test (OLS)
The first stage of the one-leg stand test is to stand with the feet together and hands at the side while listening to instructions. The second stage has the driver positioning one leg 6 inches above the ground, with the foot being parallel to the ground, and counting out loud (one-thousand one, one-thousand two, etc.) until further instructed by the police officer. The cues a police officer looks and listens for are balance issues during the instructional stage, balance and/or swaying while holding the foot above the ground, whether the foot is parallel to the ground, and using your arms for balance.
Wisconsin DUI Defense Attorney Nathan J. Dineen of Vanden Heuvel & Dineen, S.C. is a Certified Standardized Field Sobriety Test Instructor. Nathan actually teaches other attorneys how to attack field sobriety tests administration. He knows the proper procedure a WI police officer must follow, as well as how to indicate the proper amount of cues marked for each SFST. If you have been charged with a WI DUI and think the SFSTs were unfairly administered, contact Attorney Dineen at 1-877-384-6800 for a Free Case Review.