Ahhhhhhh, Christian Louboutin, the esteemed high-priced red bottom high heels. A great heel to make a fashion statement and to wear during an evening out. However, not a good shoe to wear while taking the DUI field sobriety tests. No one knows this better than Sunny Cross who failed her DUI field sobriety tests while wearing her Louboutins, telling officers while being arrested that her beautiful heels were the reason she failed the DUI tests.
Sunny Cross, known by MTV viewers for appearing on the first episode of hit reality show “Catfish,” was arrested for DUI (driving under the influence) in Arkansas in January of 2013. Before her arrest, Sunny was asked to take the DUI field sobriety tests while wearing her Louboutins. Apparently, the officers were unfamiliar with the difficulty and pain associated with walking in 4-5 inch stiletto high heels. Needless to say, Sunny failed the tests.
Even when completely sober, the savviest of high heel wearers would have major difficulty trying to perform the clown tricks required by the DUI field tests. Nearly impossible!
Sunny’s claim has validity to it. She would have performed the DUI field tests better if she had been wearing a shoe that provided balance and stability such as a sneaker or flat. Her glammy high heels were at fault!
In addition to failing the DUI field sobriety tests, Sonny blew a .08 into the breathalyzer, and was considered to be an impaired driver. She was arrested and charged with DUI. Sunny recently pled guilty to the DUI and was sentenced to complete a 90 day substance abuse program.
Three commonly used DUI field sobriety tests are called The Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration):
1. One Leg Stand – In the OLS test, the suspect is instructed to stand with one foot approximately six inches off the ground and count aloud by thousands (One thousand-one, one thousand-two, etc.) until told to put the foot down. The officer times the subject for 30 seconds. The officer looks for four indicators of impairment, including swaying while balancing, using arms to balance, hopping to maintain balance, and putting the foot down.
2. Walk and Turn – In the WAT test, the subject is directed to take nine steps, heel-to-toe, along a straight line. After taking the steps, the suspect must turn on one foot and return in the same manner in the opposite direction. The examiner looks for eight indicators of impairment: if the suspect cannot keep balance while listening to the instructions, begins before the instructions are finished, stops while walking to regain balance, does not touch heel-to-toe, steps off the line, uses arms to balance, makes an improper turn, or takes an incorrect number of steps.
3. Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus – In the HGN test, the officer observes the eyes of a suspect as the suspect follows a slowly moving object such as a pen or small flashlight, horizontally with his or her eyes. The examiner looks for three indicators of impairment in each eye: if the eye cannot follow a moving object smoothly, if jerking is distinct when the eye is at maximum deviation, and if the angle of onset of jerking is within 45 degrees of center. If, between the two eyes, four or more clues appear, the suspect likely had consumed alcohol.
Witten by S.O