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Our DUI Lawyer Lists Possible Reasons for Failing Field Sobriety Test

Posted by Blackie Burak | Mar 26, 2019 | 0 Comments

Clients sometimes tell our Napa DUI lawyer that they were not impaired but that they did not understand what they needed to do in order to complete a field sobriety test. Complex instructions sometimes mean that you innocently fail what should be a straightforward test.

Additional Reasons for Failing FSTs

Other possible reasons for failing FSTs might include

  • Exhaustion,
  • Poor coordination and
  • Anxiety or stress.

For example, our Napa DUI lawyer might challenge the validity of the horizontal gaze nystagmus test based on outside factors unrelated to impairment. This particular test has a history of various reasons that could lead to the driver's failure.

Complicated Directions That Must Be Quickly Learned

FSTs are not basic tests with just one, two or three steps. Instead, they involve complex requirements. The officer will likely only explain the directions once and demonstrate how to do the test in just a few seconds. You must then remember what he or she said and follow the directions exactly. Your Walnut Creek DUI lawyer can successfully demonstrate these challenges in court. Your lawyer will ask the officer to repeat the FST directions for the jury and ask if he or she gave the directions in the same way as presented in court. The officer will likely respond yes. The set of instructions probably takes no longer than 15 seconds. During closing arguments, your Napa DUI lawyer will probably emphasize your compliance despite how quickly the officer recited the directions. Additional conditions, including wind, traffic, uneven surfaces and inclement, might further hinder this process. To further emphasize this point, your attorney will ask the jurors if they can remember and follow the instructions of the FSTs based on what they heard in court. The jurors have the benefit of a quiet, focused environment to review the FSTs in court, helping them remember the directions under much better circumstances.

Call Our Walnut Creek DUI Lawyer

If you failed an FST, contact our Napa DUI lawyer at the Law Office of Blackie Burak for further help with your case. Call us at (925) 933-4500 today.

About the Author

Blackie Burak

Attorney Blackie Burak has nearly 40 years of successful criminal defense experience. He effectively uses this experience to mount an aggressive defense against even the most complex DUI / DWI charges. His keen focus on this area is based on his cutting-edge knowledge, skills and courtroom techni...


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If you have been arrested for DUI in northern or central California, please contact the Walnut Creek law office online or call toll free at 1-866-BLCKDUI for a free consultation. Contact Now