When people in Maryland are pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence, they are often given field sobriety tests by officers. These tests are certainly not foolproof, and when they are not conducted accurately can give very misleading results.
An Arizona retiree found this out for himself recently. His wife is an emergency room nurse and so he has worked out his schedule to be with her when she is home. As a result, he often sleeps during the day and runs errands and goes to the gym after dark. A recent trip home from working out led officers to arrest him on suspicion of DUI.
The officers pulled him over after he crossed a white line in his lane. Although he had not been drinking, officers were suspicious. The man, a retired firefighter, has joint problems; in fact, he had been scheduled for a hip replacement surgery. When he performed the field sobriety tests, his gait -- due to his injuries -- seemed suspicious to the officers.
An officer then told the man his eyes looked bloodshot. The man said that it was possible because he had just been swimming in the chlorinated pool at his gym. Before long, the man was placed in handcuffs and taken to the police station; his car was impounded.
At the station, the man performed a breath test; the reading showed he had zero alcohol in his system. After a drug recognition expert verified that the man had no intoxicating substances in his system, the charge was dropped and he was released.
The man has since filed a lawsuit against the city. He says the money is not particularly important to him. As a retired firefighter, he says, he just wants public officials to be accountable for their actions.
Source: ABC 15 News, “Surprise man charged with DUI, documents show drug recognition experts said no impairment present,” Christopher Sign, June 4, 2013