Clients sometimes tell our Fort Worth DWI attorney that law enforcement personnel confused them by asking numerous questions so that they were distracted and could not complete the field sobriety tests. In general, the officer will interrogate you prior to the FSTs as part of assessing if you are impaired and if so, the level of impairment. For example, he or she will check for the smell of alcohol or the slurring of speech.
Reasons for Interrogation
Authorities also ask a person questions prior to an FST in order to check for possible physical ailments that would eliminate the use of certain FSTs. For example, if a person has bad knees, then the officer will not administer the one-leg stand, which requires balancing. The officer will also observe a person for signs of possible mental impairment that can show up during questioning.
Divided attention means that the person must complete two or more tasks at a given time, such as counting and touching his or her nose. When the subject is drinking, the person struggles with the tasks or cannot do them. Driving a vehicle means that you must divide your attention and multitask.
Other examples include:
- The walk-and turn test, when a person must do one thing while listening to complex directions,
- Counting by thousands while balancing on one foot, or
- Two different FSTs that are combined together.
Other Examples of Divided-Attention Tests
Further examples of these tests include asking for two things at the same time, such as the car title and a driver’s license. The officer might also interrupt you or distract you with questions or even ask questions that seem to come from nowhere.
Call Our Fort Worth DWI Attorney at (877) 208-3382
If you have questions about how an officer performed divided-attention tasks, talk to our Fort Worth DWI attorney at the Law Office of Bryan P. Hoeller.