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Your Health and False Drunk Driving Accusations

The Collin County Law Group Oct. 29, 2019

Most people in Texas are aware that when a police officer suspects they may be intoxicated during a traffic stop, the officer may ask them to get out of their car and take a few roadside tests. These tests are called field sobriety tests and, as explained by, they are often quite inaccurate. Their accuracy rates range from a low of only 65% to a high of 77%.

There are several factors that may contribute to inaccurate results in these tests and many include a person’s physical, emotional or mental health. For example, a person who has knee problems may not be able to balance well on one leg. A person who has anxiety may also be unable to balance perfectly on one leg, especially under the stress of being interrogated by a law enforcement officer.

A recent report by CNN reveals yet another health condition that may contribute to a person falsely being accused of drunk driving. The condition is called auto-brewery syndrome or gut fermentation syndrome. In this condition, a person’s own body essentially becomes a brewery. One man in North Carolina was even charged with a driving while intoxicated offense and several years later found to have ABS.

At the time of his arrest, officers refused to believe his assertions that he had not been drinking. His blood alcohol content was 0.20%. Several years later, the man’s condition is finally under control after extensive treatment to balance the bacteria in his gastrointestinal tract. The report did not indicate if the man would be able to have his drunk driving offense overturned in light of the diagnosis.