Roadside Test/Standardized Field Sobriety Tests

Law Enforcement Officers use field tests to determine if there is sufficient reason to arrest people for Driving While Impaired. They are trained to look for certain types of driving, the smell and containers of alcohol in your car, and these road-side tests to determine if there is reason to arrest your for DWI and take you downtown for a breath or blood test.

The key to winning these cases is making the state prove that they had a legitimate reason to stop you in the first place. Many stops take place for legitimate reasons, but there are other times when officers are “hunting” a drunk driver. This is when the officer pulls a driver over just because it is late, they are seen leaving a bar, or because of some other reason that does not constitute bad driving. Examples of traffic violations having nothing to do with “bad” driving that would lead an officer to think the person had been drinking are light violations, tag violations, signal violations, and other things like weaving within a lane but not crossing lines. Our office is trained to attack these types of stops aggressively and fight for you.


Other types of stops are now used by law enforcement to target drunk drivers. DWI checkpoints and “License” check points are being used by Highway Patrol, sheriff departments, and local law enforcement to look for those who are drinking and driving illegally. Checkpoints nowadays can even have an on-site bus that is used to herd people in to take the breath test or draw your blood right after you are arrested. The Law office of Antoan Whidbee knows that even a checkpoint that looks innocent enough can violate the law and could be an illegal stop of your vehicle.

Roadside Tests

You must also make the state prove that the officers had reason to arrest you based on how you performed on these tests. In other words, you must have a lawyer that not only understands the law as to what is a good stop and a bad one but also if the officer are using legit roadside tests and more importantly if they are even asking citizens to perform t he tests properly. Officers are trained that there are certain tests that are scientifically proven to detect whether a person is likely to blow over .08 the legal limit but the are ALSO trained that even those test which are scientifically accurate MUST be conducted properly in order to be reliable.  We at the Law Office of Antoan Whidbee are trained in which tests are scientifically proven AND how these tests should be instructed by the officers.

The most popular of the roadside tests are:

  • Horizontal Gaze Nastagmus [EYE TEST]
  • Walk and Turn
  • One Leg Stand

Portable Breath Test

Officers are trained to give the portable breath test after the other tests have been given. Many times officers just smell alcohol and make a citizen take a PBT but in a proper DWI arrest it should be given last to confirm an officer’s suspicion. Officer using this device as a crutch rather than a tool is evidenced in this video.