The virtual library is full of useful information. We have all the SFST manuals and have added the 2015 update. The NHTSA SFST manual on DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety Testing is one of our best tools. I have found that the way the officers are instructed to investigate a DUI case is much different than how they actually conduct the investigation in the field. The NHTSA manual lays it all out on what they should be doing.
Some of the most helpful sections are Vehicle in Motion and Personal Observation. Both of these sections will give the practitioner a fountain of information on all the things the officer didn’t see, and all the reasons why your client was sober.
The Pre-Arrest Screening also sets forth the standards of proper administration of the Field Sobriety Tests. And in the 2015 SFST Manual they placed back in the language we all loved to beat them with.
It is necessary to emphasize this validation applies only when:
- The tests are administered in the prescribed, standardized manner,
- The standardization clues are used to assess the suspect’s performance,
- The standardization criteria are employed to interpret that performance.
If any one of the SFST elements is changed, the validity may be compromised. This was so important, they moved it up in the manual.