While we continue to await the return of DUI checkpoints to the Jersey Shore, the Law Office of Frederick P. Sisto is happy to provide tips to help you avoid a wrongful DUI conviction. The first and probably the most important one is that you have a right to refuse to perform roadside field sobriety tests. These tests are skewed towards producing “evidence” that helps secure convictions.
Police are not required to tell you that you have a right to refuse field sobriety testing. The tests include: recitation of the alphabet, the One Leg Stand Test, the Walk and Turn Test, and the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test. It is usually best to politely refuse to participate in any of these tests by simply stating that you prefer not to do them. While you might end up arrested anyway based on the alleged smell of alcohol or other factors, law enforcement will not have the test results to use against you in court so long as you politely refuse to take them. An absence of test results can be the difference between a DUI conviction and DUI dismissal. Note that you are legally required to submit to breath testing once you are arrested for suspicion of DUI, whether you attempt the roadside tests or not.
Stay tuned for additional tips, remember that the best DUI defense is a designated driver, and enjoy the rest of your summer.