If you’re ever pulled over by a cop in Michigan who thinks you’ve been drinking, you’re probably going to be asked to take a roadside sobriety test. The officer may ask you a few questions, like “Have you had anything to drink this evening?” or “How many drinks did we enjoy before driving home today?” DON’T ANSWER THAT! Lawyer up. Your are not required to answer questions except the ones about your name, address, driver’s license, etc.
The officer is also likely to ask you to submit to a roadside breath test, which you have the right to refuse (just know that there are civil consequences for your choice but no criminal consequences!). But the fun part of the encounter usually starts when the cop asks you to step out of your car and start performing tricks on the side of the road to prove that you’re sober… or drunk!ssment starts the moment they walk up to your car.
There are lots of Standardized Field Sobriety tests they can ask you do…
- The Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) Test:
This is the test where a cop holds a pen, or some other small object in their hand, and moves it slowly from side to side. Your job is to track it with your eyes without losing focus, or suffering from involuntary shaking of the eyes which happens naturally at the extremes of your peripheral vision. In theory, the more intoxicated you are, the sooner your eyes begin to shake as they track from side to side, and the more likely you are to struggle with visual tracking.
- The Finger-to-Nose Test
This is where the officer has you stand and place your finger carefully on the tip of your nose while keeping your eyes shut. It sounds simple enough, but for drunk people it can be a ridiculously difficult task. While you’re trying to touch your nose, the cop will be watching to see if you’re peeking (to find your nose), swaying in place, trembling, or struggling to stay upright without support.
- The Standing-on-One-Leg Test
During this test, the officer has you stand on one leg, with one foot raised about six inches off the ground, and count aloud by one thousands until they say you’re done. For sober people with no medical conditions, this isn’t too hard. For intoxicated folks, or people with balance issues or a host of other potential health concerns, it can be almost impossible!
Here’s the important part: You are not legally required to do any of the field sobriety tests. You can simply and politely decline to do them.
Don’t leave it to chance! Make sure you have a good DUI defense attorney!
As soon as you get a chance, you need to call us. Whether it’s from your car as the officer is pulling you over, or as soon as they let you have a phone call down at the station after your arrest, the sooner you call us, the better. Why? Because the sooner you have a skilled DUI defense attorney working to protect your rights and advise you correctly, the better your chances of success are!
The experienced drunk driving defense attorneys at The Kronzek Firm are available 24/7 to help you, whether you were arrested in Lansing, Charlotte, Dansville, Williamston or Jackson. We’ve spent decades helping people from all over Michigan fight drunk and drugged driving charges, and we can help you too. Call 866 766 5245 (866 7No Jail) today, and make sure your defense team is top notch!