MA State Trooper Accused of Operating Under the Influence

A Massachusetts State Police Trooper is accused of DUI after being found passed out inside his car in Connecticut.  Officer Sheehan was arrested early Saturday morning.  Officers at the scene conducted sobriety tests and concluded that Sheehan shoed signs of impairment.  He will be arraigned for Operating Under the Influence and marked lanes violation on July 30thFull story here.

Field sobriety tests aim to measure a person’s sobriety and dexterity.  Without a breathalyzer, a person’s performance of these tests is the primary evidence used against them for a DUI/OUI charge.

The standard field sobriety tests include:

  1. The horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) which is an involuntary jerking of the eyeball that occurs naturally as the eyes gaze side to side.
  2. The walk and turn test, which requires the individual to take nine stops, heel to toe along a straight line, turn on one foot and return the same manner in the opposite direction.
  3. The one leg stand, where for 30 seconds the suspect is timed as he/she stands on one foot, with the other about 6 inches off the ground, and counts by thousands.

Other less standard tests include reciting the alphabet, counting out loud, or finger dexterity tests.

The field sobriety tests are not foolproof, and are very subjective.  Some people who are not even under the influence fail them as well.  If you have been charged with a DUI/OUI and have failed a sobriety test, contact the attorneys at Brooks & Crowley and explore the legal options available for you.

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