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horizontal gaze nystagmus Tag

Dayton DUI Attorney Charles Rowland > Posts tagged "horizontal gaze nystagmus"

HGN Test Doomed By Lack Of Training

HGN Test Doomed By Lack Of Training According to their own manual, the HGN test, Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, is the most reliable of the three standardized field sobriety tests.  The police are trained that it is 77% accurate at detecting subjects at or above a .10% blood alcohol concentration.  But that is not the whole story.Officers are not told that everyone (EVERYONE) has nystagmus. The presence of alcohol merely enhances or magnifies this natural effect. In addition, they are instructed that there are 40 different kinds of nystagmus. Yes, everyone - but that is somehow not important to their training. The fact...

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Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus – Understanding The “Most Reliable” Roadside Test

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus The horizontal gaze nystagmus test is an eye test approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration(hereinafter NHTSA) as a tool to detect clues of impairment in drivers.  The HGN test is one of three psychomotor tests approved as part of the standardized field sobriety testing protocol employed by law enforcement officers throughout the United States and used here in Ohio. HGN: What Is The Science? Nystagmus is defined as the oscillation of the eyeball that occurs when there is a disturbance of the vestibular system or the oculomotor control of the eye.  During the test, a law enforcement officer is looking for is an involuntary...

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What Is A Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test?

What is the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test? Alcohol is a central nervous system depressant affecting many of the higher as well as lower motor control systems of the body. This results in poor motor coordination, sluggish reflexes, and emotional instability. The part of the nervous system that fine-tunes and controls hand movements and body posture also controls eye movements. When intoxicated, a person's nervous system will display a breakdown in the smooth and accurate control of eye movements. This breakdown in the smooth control of eye movement may result in the inability to hold the eyes steady, resulting in a number...

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There’s A New Standardized Field Sobriety Tests “Guide”

Standardized Field Sobriety Tests are commonly known as the roadside activities that police officers ask drivers to perform if the officer suspects that the driver is impaired by alcohol or another impairing substance. We call them "stupid human tricks."  Contrary to popular understanding and belief, many of these tests have little basis in science, and the ones that do are frequently performed incorrectly.NHTSA has developed a new "GUIDE" in assessing Standardized Field Sobriety Tests.  The new (March, 2013) version focuses more on having law enforcement recognize and administer tests to determine impaired driving by substances other than alcohol.  No new scientific studies...

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Standardized Field Sobriety Tests: They Don’t Work

The National Highway Safety and Traffic Administration’s standardized field sobriety tests were developed based on a 1977 study. The subjects of this study had blood alcohol content levels ranging from zero to .15 percent. Though there was such a large different between the test subjects, there was a 47 percent error rate in determining a person’s impairment after administering the standardized field sobriety tests. 47%! This means that almost half of the people were misidentified by police officers as being drunk when in fact they were not. What is worse, one of the researchers agreed that the tests are problematic...

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Unintended Consequences of an Ohio DUI Charge

A drunk driving charge can affect you in ways that you may not expect. Listed below are some of the more vexing issues associated with an Ohio DUI (OVI) charge.1. Child Custody - If you are involved in a custody dispute, or have a vindictive spouse who would like to start one, a DUI/OVI conviction can be used against you in domestic relations court.  Automatic suspensions may make it difficult to exercise visitation with your children.  You may also find a court who will refuse to let you transport the children due to a DUI/OVI conviction, thereby increasing the cost or...

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Nonstandardized Field Sobriety Tests

Ohio has adopted the three-test field sobriety protocol as set forth in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) manual for training law enforcement officers.  The three tests adopted by NHTSA all survived scientific scrutiny as being indicative of impairment.  The tests are: (1) horizontal gaze nystagmus, a test of the subject's eyes; (2)  walk & turn; (3) one-leg-stand.  The officer is trained to administer the tests in a standardized fashion and record "clues" of impairment as evidenced by the subject's performance on the tests.Often, you will encounter a circumstance where the officer employs an non-standardized field sobriety test.  These...

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Standardized Field Sobriety Tests: You Can’t Say That!

"The notion that an officer may testify and estimate that a person, based on his or her Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus results, will test over the statutory limit a certain percentage of the time is alarming."  This is not the opinion of an OVI defense attorney, but the opinion of the 4th District Court of Appeals in State v. Martin, 2005-Ohio-1732 (Ohio Ct. App. 4th Dist. Pickaway County 2005)(error found to be harmless in light of the other evidence adduced).  Therein, the court found it was error for the trial court to permit the arresting officer to testify that four or...

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Ohio OVI: Standardized Field Sobriety Tests & Marijuana

State v. Dixon, 2007-Ohio-5189 (Ohio Ct. App. 12th Dist. Clermont County 2007).More and more, we are seeing law enforcement officers arrest drivers on suspicion of operating a vehicle under the influence of marijuana.  Often, an officer will request a urine test for marijuana after a defendant has blown substantially under the per se alcohol limit on a breath test machine.  This raises questions about the proper determination of probable cause.  If, for example, no alcohol was suspected how did the officer arrive deduce enough evidence to make an arrest? Were the standardized field sobriety tests administered to detect alcohol or...

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