At the police station, I was turned over to an official "DWI Task Force" team (two officers). The first thing they wanted me to was the Field Sobriety Tests (FST). You know - walk the line heel-to-toe, like you see on TV. Other tests involve standing on one foot and counting to 30, and standing with your eyes closed and your head tilted back. I later learned that these tests are "divided attention" tests, designed to test your physical acuity, as well as your ability to follow directions, do two things at one time, etc. Why they use these tests I don't understand, because no accredited medical society endorses them, and even stone-sober people can't pass them. They don't tell you what you are being graded on. You do not know that, "Stand there until I tell you to start," means, "If you shift your weight or move even one muscle, I am going to put black marks all over your scored." The also don't tell you that you have a right to refuse to perform the tests. The whole thing is overwhelming, you're scared, in shock, and you're afraid to ask questions.
Next the officers asked me again to take the breath test. This time, I was allowed to sit and read information about it- specifically, what happens if you do or do not take the test. In Texas, if you take the test and fail, you loose your driver's license for three months. If you refuse to take the test at all, you lose your license for six months. IF you take the test and pass, you don't lose your license...but you can still be prosecuted for DWI, if the police think there is enough against you. A conviction cold mean losing your license.
With the printed information in front of me and time to think, I figured, "I don't think I'll fail the test but you never know. If I lose my license and can't get to work, I probably can afford to make it for three months. But, I can not afford to be off for six months." So I decided to take the test.
I "blew", as it is called, under the legal limit. I was elated! Until the officer looked at me and said two words- "reverse extrapolation," which means that they use mathematics to figure what your level is now and then figure the rate an average human metabolizes alcohol, and use that to say what they think your blood alcohol level might have been at the time you were driving. So, no. They were not going to let me go home.
The police officer then did some test on my eyes. You know- follow the moving pen with your eyes. He also took my pulse and blood pressure, and spent a lot of time checking my inner arms for needle tracks. The he asked if I would consent to a drug test. WHAT? Me suspected of illegal drugs? Well, I do not do any drugs, and I had no qualms about taking this test. But wait a minute! Many people I know do use marijuana and some of the people at the party were smoking. What if I had inhaled some of the smoke, and there was enough to test positive?
They said that something about the way my eyes moved was consistent with eye movements of people high on dope. Oh, "No Problem", I said, smiling again.
If you find yourself neeeding the help of a DWI Attorney in Houston please contact The Martinez Law Firm at (713) 242-1779 for a free consultation.