Drug DWI Field Sobriety Tests in Fort Worth
Many people realize that if they are pulled over for drunk driving, they may have to take field sobriety tests. However, they may not realize is that if they are pulled over for a drug DWI, they may have to take those same field sobriety tests.
Drug DWI field sobriety tests in Fort Worth are not very different than those taken for a DWI involving alcohol. The only difference may be that there may not be a breathalyzer test administered, as these do not test for the presence of drugs. A knowledgeable attorney can answer any further questions of what to expect in a drug DWI field sobriety test.
Common Tests in Fort Worth
There are several drug DWI field sobriety tests in Fort Worth that an individual who has been pulled over may have to complete. They are all meant to test the driver’s coordination and attention to help officers determine whether they are incapacitated.
Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test
This test may be administered in a drug DWI or one that involves the consumption of alcohol. The science behind it is so suspect that, in many states, this test is not even legal. However, lawmakers in Texas believe that it can help officers detect the presence of alcohol or drugs so this is a legal field sobriety test for drug DWI in Fort Worth.
During the test, the officer will have the suspected driver follow an object, such as the officer’s finger, with their eyes. As they do, the officer will look in their eyes to determine if they have Nystagmus or a rapid involuntary movement of the eyes. If that involuntary movement is present, the officer may assume the driver is under the influence of drugs.
The Walk and Turn Test
The Walk and Turn test is one that divides a driver’s attention, so the officer can determine how incapacitated they are, if at all. In this test, the officer will instruct a person to walk about nine steps, placing one foot right in front of the other so their toe touches the heel of their other foot. After walking the necessary number of steps, the officer will then tell the driver to turn around on one foot and walk in the opposite direction in the same fashion.
As the driver takes this test, the officer will look for several things. They will look for balance issues in the driver, the ability to listen to directions, whether the feet touch toe-to-heel, whether the arms are used to maintain balance, and whether an incorrect number of steps are taken. If any of those signs are evident, the officer may determine that the person is under the influence of drugs.
One Leg Stand Test
Like the walk and turn test, the One Leg Stand test is intended to divide a driver’s attention to see whether they can still perform simple tasks. This is a very common drug DWI field sobriety test in Fort Worth.
In this test, the officer will simply ask the driver to stand on one leg for 30 seconds while providing other instructions as well, such as maybe changing the direction of their leg that is not on the ground. It is also a good test for balance, as someone under the influence may not be able to perform this test adequately.
Refusing Drug DWI Field Sobriety Tests
After being pulled over, a person may wonder whether they can refuse to take a drug DWI field sobriety test. The truth is that it is legal to refuse to take these tests, but it is not always advised.
Refusing to take a field sobriety test can result in the suspension of a driver’s license and other DWI penalties, even if the driver is eventually found not to have been under the influence at the time they drove.
Talking to a Fort Worth Attorney About Drug DWI Field Sobriety Tests
Whether a driver wants to refuse a sobriety test and deal with the fallout later, has failed a field sobriety test, or passed the tests but were charged with a drug DWI anyway, any driver pulled over in a traffic stop for a DWI should speak with an attorney. There are many variables in these cases, and even a person who thought they would be found innocent may end up being charged with a drug DWI.
An attorney knows how to fight these charges, how drug DWI field sobriety tests in Fort Worth should be administered legally, and how to build a defense for anyone charged with a drug DWI. If you have been pulled over or arrested for a drug DWI, call an experienced attorney today and get the help you need.