There are many sobriety field tests (SFTs) that police will use on someone such as repeating the alphabet backwards. What many people don’t know is that this test among others, are not the standardized tests recommended by NHTSA.
There are only three scientifically reliable tests: the horizontal gaze nystagmus test (follow the pen with the eyes), the walk-and-turn test, and the one-leg stand test.
Virginia police have been known to make mistakes during a DUI arrest. For example, in the one-leg stand test an officer should not test people who are 50 pounds overweight or are physically impaired. Also, the SFTs were designed to predict a .10 level or above and the legal BAC limit is currently .08, leaving room for error. Another defense in a DWI case is the reliability of the breath testing machine itself.
If you have taken one of these field tests, there are many possible defenses available for DUI charges. An experienced Virginia DUI attorney can help you if you have been wrongfully accused of driving under the influence.
The article “Is It Possible to Get Out of a DUI or DWI Charge” has more information on this topic.
Barber is a former assistant police chief who was demoted to captain following her DUI conviction in Virginia and is actively trying to appeal her DUI case.
On August 16, 2008, Barber was pulled over at approximately 9:40 PM after a Virginia State Police Trooper said she was weaving in traffic and almost hit another vehicle on I-64 near North King Street.
Barber told the trooper that she drank a “Texas-size” margarita at a restaurant about 30 minutes prior to being pulled over. According to the state trooper, Barber did not do well on sobriety tests and a breath test showed a blood alcohol content of 0.12 percent.
In an article posted on the Dailypress.com, Barber was quoted as saying, “of course I regret it. I take full responsibility.” She made this comment after being found guilty at a hearing in Hampton General District Court in November.
Barber’s appeal is being heard in Hampton Circuit Court. In her appeal, she contends that her case should have been dismissed because a judge would not accept a legal maneuver that would have given her the opportunity for a lesser conviction of reckless driving instead of DUI. According to Barber’s attorney, the judge was required under state law to accept the plea.
The Hampton Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office is requesting a jury trial in Barber’s case and has stated that the judge did nothing wrong.
Barber’s motion for dismissal is scheduled for April 13 and her trial is supposed to start May 26.