You may be leaving a party at a friend's house, a dinner with family,
or a business meeting when you see a patrol car's lights flashing
behind you. You pull over and find yourself confronted by a suspicious
officer who’s bent on nabbing drunk drivers.
The officer describes a traffic violation you allegedly committed and asks
if you’ve been drinking. At this point, the officer suspects that
you were driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. What should
you do in the face of a potential
Though the right set of behaviors on your part depend on the circumstances,
your "gut" feelings and concerns, the following are basic DUI
"don'ts" that can help protect your interests if you are
pulled over on suspicion of
What Not to Do
Don't panic. First and foremost, remain calm. Comply with the officer's demands,
supplying your driver's license and registration information. Most
of all, be polite!
Being pulled over is nerve-racking but avoid panicking, resisting arrest
or speeding away as the cop is standing by the road, as this could not
only support DUI charges, it could result in additional criminal charges.
Don't incriminate yourself. When you’re pulled over, the officer may ask if you have been drinking,
where you are coming from, where you are going, whether you know if you
did anything wrong, etc.
Remember, you do not have to answer this type of informal questioning.
Politely refuse to answer questions you believe may result in self-incrimination.
If you are arrested and taken into custody, do not submit to formal questioning
without your attorney present.
You have the right to an attorney after your arrest – exercise this
right and protect your interests.
Don't submit to field sobriety testing. A lot of people are not aware of the fact that
field sobriety tests are not mandatory. You have the right to refuse such testing.
A refusal may result in your arrest anyway; if the officer believes there
is probable cause to support that you were drinking and driving, the results
of the field sobriety tests will be saved and later used for one reason:
to secure a DUI conviction. So,
why give them more ammunition?
Don't consent to a search of your vehicle. If the officer asks to search your vehicle, remember that you do not
have to consent to a search. Politely refuse. Law enforcement may only
search your vehicle with
your consent or by establishing probable cause, for example, they can plainly see an
open bottle of alcohol resting on the center console.
Don't wait to talk to an attorney. If you are arrested for DUI, contact a DUI attorney as soon as possible.
Your lawyer will immediately go to work ensuring that you have a DMV hearing,
and they’ll do whatever’s necessary to minimize the consequences
of your DUI arrest.
Speak With One of Orange County’s Top DUI Firms
Your DUI arrest is over, but it’s going to take months before the
case is fully resolved. In the meantime, get the peace of mind you need
to focus on other areas of your life, knowing that you are doing all that
you can to address and resolve your DUI.
Call the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, one of Orange County’s top
DUI defense firms!