Can You Refuse A Sobriety Test When You’re Pulled Over?
In a zero-tolerance state like Arizona, it is important to know your rights when it comes to driving under the influence. In the event that you are pulled over after having a drink or two, it is valuable to understand your rights regarding refusing a sobriety test when pulled over by law enforcement. Moreover, it is good to know the types of tests Flagstaff, AZ police officers could ask you to perform and what consenting to those tests means.
Common Causes for Sobriety Tests
Police officers will not pull you over if they do not believe they have probable cause. There are specific signs associated with drivers who are under the influence that law enforcement looks out for including:
- Driving under or over the speed limit
- Driving in multiple lanes or frequent lane changes
- Aggressive driving
- Lack of signal use
Your Rights When Stopped for Suspected Drunk Driving in Flagstaff
The legal blood alcohol level in Arizona is 0.08 percent which means that local and state officers will ask to test your BAC when they pull you over. In Northern Arizona, drivers do have the right to refuse sobriety tests; however, in the event that a sobriety test is refused law enforcement does still have the right to arrest a driver.
There are various types of tests Flagstaff police officers can use to test your sobriety:
Field Sobriety Tests: These types of tests include, but are not limited to, horizontal gaze nystagmus, walk and turn, or one-leg stand. Each test examines a driver’s physical abilities such as their eye motion, walking, and standing. When these sobriety tests are failed, drivers are then given a breathalyzer test to check their blood alcohol content (or BAC).
Breathalyzer: Small mechanisms called breathalyzers are used to directly test BAC and provide officers with more evidence to arrest drivers who they suspect are under the influence.
Blood Tests: Testing your blood to determine your BAC may be used in cases where driver refuses a breathalyzer test. To perform a blood test, the police will escort the suspected drunk driver to a hospital where they will get their blood drawn to determine how much alcohol is in their system. This process takes significantly longer than a field sobriety test and breathalyzer test and is only used when necessary.
When to Call a Lawyer
Sobriety tests serve law enforcement by providing evidence to justify a DUI arrest. In the event that the sobriety test was not conducted properly, drivers do have a chance to appeal the charges. which is why it is important to contact an experience Flagstaff traffic lawyer if you have been accused of driving under the influence. Call Flagstaff, AZ attorney Vaughan Winborne today and let him put his more than 30 years of legal experience to work for your case.