If you have been arrested for an IL DUI, chances are you took the One Leg Stand (OLS) field sobriety test. On this page, Carbondale, IL criminal lawyer Brian Roberts will help you understand what the One Leg Stand is, how it is scored, and some common defenses to the officer’s conclusions about your performance on this test.
Alcohol intoxication is said to make it more difficult for you to divide your attention between multiple tasks. The OLS test is designed to divide your attention between mental and physical tasks to test you for alcohol impairment. The OLS field sobriety test is the least accurate of the three standardized field sobriety tests.
There are four clues of impairment for the One Leg Stand field sobriety test:
1. Sways while balancing
2. Uses arms to balance
4. Puts foot down
NHTSA claims that if you show two or more clues of impairment on the OLS test there is an eighty-three percent chance that you are impaired by alcohol. The original research, however, only gave a sixty-five percent chance of impairment for this test.
One of the best arguments against the reliability of the OLS field sobriety test is that the police officer is asking you to perform an abnormal test to determine whether or not you have lost the normal use of your mental and physical capacity. No one stands on one leg and counts aloud on a regular basis. If you did, someone would probably call the police and report you as a suspicious person.
The OLS is one of the more difficult SFST’s because it requires a high level of balance. The test protocol does not consider whether you have ever had a leg, knee, ankle, back or neck injury; does not take your age into account; does not environmental factors such as weather, passing motorists, flashing police lights, and other distractions into account; does not take into account if you are overweight, or otherwise in poor physical condition; and, it does not consider whether you have had a head injury that impairs your ability to balance on one leg.
Some police trainers teach their police officer students to slightly bend their knee, or squeeze their buttocks together while demonstrating this test in order to give them better balance. Yet, you are never given these tips by the police officer as you are being asked to perform this test on the side of the roadway.
Carbondale, IL criminal lawyer Brian Roberts understands the difficulty normal people have performing this test and can help your jury understand these difficulties as well. If you have been arrested for a Southern Illinois DUI call Mr. Roberts right now for a free consultation. You have nothing to lose but your driver’s license and freedom if you don’t. Call now!