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Dallas Cowboys Defensive Tackle Charged with DWI

By Joseph Low on January 24, 2013

USA Today reports that Jay Ratliff, defensive tackle for the Dallas Cowboys NFL team has been arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI) after he allegedly crashed his pick-up into a big rig and then a barricade in Texas. Neither he nor the big rig driver was injured in the collision.

According to police who responded to the scene, Ratliff failed a field sobriety test after the crash. But field sobriety tests, as any experienced DWI defense attorney knows, are less reliable than they are made out to be.

Defense attorney Joseph H. Low understands the harm drunk drivers cause innocent drivers, pedestrians, and other road users, but this does not mean that every driver that “seems” to be drunk or impaired by alcohol actually is, and field sobriety tests are not a reliable way to find out. These standardized tests, which include the HGN (horizontal gaze nystagmus), WAT (walk-and-turn), and OLS (one-leg stand), may not just be difficult for someone who is intoxicated, they can be difficult for someone who is completely sober. Nervousness, lack of balance, and/or coordination and even certain medical conditions may cause a driver to fail these tests and this failure is often used by law enforcement and prosecution to pressure alleged DUI drivers to plead guilty. But this is not necessarily in their best interests.

A knowledgeable criminal defense attorney understands the unreliability of the field sobriety tests and can make sure your failure of them is not the contributing factor determining guilt or innocence. With an aggressive and strategic defense you can rest assured that you will not be unjustly convicted or excessively punished.

Posted in: DUI

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