If one is arrested for dwi in NJ, do I have the right to refuse field sobriety tests as long as I submit to breath/blood tests?

Asked about 2 years ago - Asbury Park, NJ

I've a friend who was arrested for dwi; she refused to submit to field sobriety tests, but willingly submitted to a blood alcohol test; are there penalties for failing to submit to the field sobriety tests, as long as she agreed to a blood alcohol sample?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Mark M Cheser

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    5

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . NJ statutes do not require you to submit to FST. You are required to take the Alcotest. There are not many other things that will anger an officer more. If the Alcotest readings were under .08 it will be difficult for the State to prove an observation case but they still can try- manner of driving, alcohol on the breath, watery eyes, unstable walk, fumbling with documents etc. I would suggest she retain an experienced criminal trial attorney. Medicals regarding lack of balance or a bad leg etc. would go far. She has a good defense but not a slam dunk. Call for a free consultation.

  2. Greggory M Marootian

    Pro

    Contributor Level 12

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You have a right to refuse field sobriety tests without statutory penalties. NJ Law requires that you submit to breath testing. A Court may however, look at the refusal to submit to field sobriety tests as evidence of guilt to DWI. In other words, the Court can draw an inference that you refused to perform field tests because you knew you would fail – because you were drunk.

    Greggory M. Marootian, Esq.

  3. Matthew R Schutz

    Contributor Level 16

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I agree with counsel. Do you know what number she blew?

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