Driving under influence Field sobriety exercises Defendant’s Consent

May 06, 2023

The trial court suppressed the results of the defendant’s Field Sobriety Exercise. The State of Florida appealed the suppression and after reviewing the record the court of appeals found the trial court erred in suppressing evidence of the defendant’s performance on Field Sobriety Exercise based upon state’s failure to establish that defendant freely and voluntarily consented to performing the exercises. Stating that when a law enforcement officer has sufficient probable cause to believe a defendant has committed DUI, the defendant’s consent to taking physical sobriety exercises is immaterial, and officer can require defendant to take part in such test. The argument that the State bears an evidentiary burden of showing that defendant voluntarily submitted to performing the Field Sobriety Exercises was rejected by the court of appeals and the case sent back to the trial court.



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