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  • Sobriety tests

    Let me just start this out with that I've never had a DUI, speeding ticket or ever been the driver in an accident. I've actually never had a moving violation of any kind.

    My daughter and I watch COPS, Campus PD or one of those types of shows about once a week or so. Sometimes for the fun of it we do the sobriety tests along with the suspects in the shows. I fail all the walking heel to toe and tipping the head back. For some reason I just can't do them. My daughter thinks its hilarious of course!

    I'm curious what you would do if you pulled someone over that failed those tests? I've made a few mistakes that were pull over worthy but just no one saw me do them. Not often, but I'm not perfect either. I know I would pass the eye test (since I wouldn't actually be impaired) and I'd be able to follow directions. But the dexterity tests I would fail, no question. Walk heel to toe - can't do it! Stand with one foot in the air - not for more than two seconds! Tip your head back, close your eyes...sir you're not supposed to fall down!

    I suppose if I was ever pulled over for anything I probably wouldn't even be given any sobriety tests since I wouldn't smell like alcohol or have slurred speech. So let's say that I was driving for 2 miles with my left turn signal on and you pull me over. Are you even likely to make me do any sobriety tests?

  • #2
    Not if there aren't any signs of impairment or odor of alcohol

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    • #3
      Under the circumstances you've described (turn signal) there would be no need to administer a Field Sobriety Test. Believe it or not, you're not the only one who has difficulty with some aspects of the FST. The FST itself is but one aspect of a decision by an Officer to arrest for DUI.

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      • #4
        Do you think a cop would have you do FST if you didn't have your headlights on at night? If you DIDN'T use your turn signal, rolled a stop sign, red light, the list goes on. FST are done when one is suspected of driving under the influence of intoxicants or drugs, not for driving like an idiot.
        Calling an illegal alien an "undocumented immigrant" is like calling a drug dealer an "unlicensed pharmacist"

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        • #5
          Yup. Lack of basic motoring skills/common sense/ability doesn't automatically equal SFST's.

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          • #6
            When somebody suffers from the general conditions you describe I prefer to use the German tests as perfected by one of the world's leading neuro surgeons Dr. Hfuhruhurr. Some people are of two minds about these tests but I believe they are zip lock solid.
            Today's Quote:

            "The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits."
            Albert Einstein

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            • #7
              Originally posted by mdrdep View Post
              when somebody suffers from the general conditions you describe i prefer to use the german tests as perfected by one of the world's leading neuro surgeons dr. Hfuhruhurr. Some people are of two minds about these tests but i believe they are zip lock solid.
              lol!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by mdrdep View Post
                When somebody suffers from the general conditions you describe I prefer to use the German tests as perfected by one of the world's leading neuro surgeons Dr. Hfuhruhurr. Some people are of two minds about these tests but I believe they are zip lock solid.
                Great test, and one gaining international recognition.

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                • #9
                  When I was on the street we used a different standard that the current FST. Similar but not as "standard" as what is commonly in use today. I couldn't perform one of them stone cold sober, therefore I never had the suspect do that particular test.

                  Likewise, don't ask me to recite the alphabet backwards or try to get me to start someplace in the middle of the alphabet.................I am going to fail sober.
                  Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

                  My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

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                  • #10
                    I'm curious as to why you can't walk heel to toe, actually. Medical condition, morbid obesity, certain medications are all good reasons. If your balance is just that poor maybe you ought to have that checked out. I've recommended people for medical reevaluation for their license when they just had no business operating a car due to eyesight, mental condition, or physical condition not allowing them to safely operate a vehicle.

                    Anyway, the "dexterity tests" aren't about dexterity. They are about the ability to divide attention. You can still "pass" without being able to do certain physical parts of the test. I often have people tell me they passed one of the tests they failed or vice versa because they don't really know what I'm looking for.
                    I miss you, Dave.
                    http://www.odmp.org/officer/20669-of...david-s.-moore

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                    • #11
                      Failing a test alone isn't enough for me. The totality of the circumstance has to come into play for me to make the arrest. Sometimes people just can't perform and pass the tests. Upon getting out of bed in the morning I'd be able to pass neither the walk and turn nor one leg stand. I always have horizontal gaze nystagmus present as well.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by CruiserClass View Post
                        You can still "pass" without being able to do certain physical parts of the test. I often have people tell me they passed one of the tests they failed or vice versa because they don't really know what I'm looking for.
                        Amen! Most people tell me on the way to the jail, "But I passed all the tests!"
                        If trees could scream, would we be so cavalier about cutting them down? We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason.

                        ---Jack Handey

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                        • #13
                          I demonstrate ALL of the physical parts of the exercises that I ask one to perform so that in court I can testify that there were no conditions that prevented the exercise from being completed. All of the exercises that I ask for you to perform are SIMPLE. ABCs, count backwards (numbers below 100), heel to toe, stand on one leg with other straight out, and my favorite of all.....pick a number between 12 and 14. Very, very few drunks get it right, but the most common answer from them is...."I'll go with lucky number seven." The not drunk enough ones, hesitate, then smile and say with a quizzical look..."13?"
                          Calling an illegal alien an "undocumented immigrant" is like calling a drug dealer an "unlicensed pharmacist"

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by CruiserClass View Post
                            I'm curious as to why you can't walk heel to toe, actually. Medical condition, morbid obesity, certain medications are all good reasons. If your balance is just that poor maybe you ought to have that checked out. I've recommended people for medical reevaluation for their license when they just had no business operating a car due to eyesight, mental condition, or physical condition not allowing them to safely operate a vehicle.
                            I have a severe balance problem. I've had it all my life. I have been checked by doctors and they don't know what's wrong other than really bad balance. I rely on visual horizon orientation for balance. When doing normal things in my daily life I don't fall down. But I can't stand up in a small tent (4 person tent or smaller). I just crawl in and out of those when camping. But it is not a coordination or hearing problem. I can juggle really well and I don't have any hearing problems. I also don't have a problem walking in the dark like if I get up in the middle of the night. I just can't stop and stand. If I stop I would probably fall over unless I touch the wall. In the shower I always keep an arm or elbow on the wall for orientation. I can then tell if I start to tip one way or another. But it is not something that I "suffer" from. I don't even think about it since I've been this way all my life. It just is what it is.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by JonB View Post
                              I have a severe balance problem. I've had it all my life. I have been checked by doctors and they don't know what's wrong other than really bad balance. I rely on visual horizon orientation for balance. When doing normal things in my daily life I don't fall down. But I can't stand up in a small tent (4 person tent or smaller). I just crawl in and out of those when camping. But it is not a coordination or hearing problem. I can juggle really well and I don't have any hearing problems. I also don't have a problem walking in the dark like if I get up in the middle of the night. I just can't stop and stand. If I stop I would probably fall over unless I touch the wall. In the shower I always keep an arm or elbow on the wall for orientation. I can then tell if I start to tip one way or another. But it is not something that I "suffer" from. I don't even think about it since I've been this way all my life. It just is what it is.
                              First thing I ask is do you have any medical conditions that prevent you from performing any of the tests. You would answer yes, I have a balance problem due to a medical condition. That would leave the out the balance portions of the sfst, simple. There are other tests that can be done, as well as other outward clues given when someone is not sober. The sfst isn't a determinator for sobriety, that's left for the BAC test.
                              GOD IS A NINJA WITH A SNIPER RIFLE, WAITING TO TAKE YOU OUT.

                              "For weapons training they told me to play DOOM"

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