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What to Do if You Are Stopped Under Suspicion of DUI

Alcohol-related arrests happen to people from all walks of life. Teachers, doctors, scientists, college students and even stay at home moms get arrested for DUI every single day. So, if you are ever pulled over by the police, what you say and do can either help or hurt you. When it’s time to pull over, here are some things that you need to remember.

  • Pull Over Carefully
    Slow your vehicle down and pull off to the right side of the road, but not until it is safe to do so. Don’t forget to use your turn signal to show the officer your intentions.
  • Stay in Your Vehicle
    Turn off your engine, and keep your hands on the steering wheel. Remain inside your vehicle unless the officer asks you to step outside. If the police see you bending over or reaching for something, they may suspect that you are reaching for a weapon.
  • Don’t Act Like You are Hiding Something
    You don’t want to look suspicious. Don’t do anything that could make you look like you are trying to dispose or hide something. If you reach under your seat, this may look as if you are hiding something such as a weapon or drugs under the seat. This could be enough for the officer to ask you to get out of your car, and search your vehicle.
  • Be Polite and Respectful
    These days, a lot more officers are wearing body cameras, which could be used as evidence against you in court. Listen to the officer and politely follow his or her instructions. Since the officer is in charge, you cannot drive off until the officer tells you that it is okay.
  • Choose Your Words Wisely
    Even if you have been drinking, we suggest that you answer the officer’s questions, but don’t argue and don’t volunteer anything. It’s better to save your arguments for the courtroom and make sure that your passengers do the same.
  • Answer Drinking Questions Carefully
    Police officers often ask drivers how much they have been drinking. You might say, “just a glass of wine at dinner,” or you may say that you had two drinks when you really had four. This is a mistake! It is better to remain silent or say that you cannot recall exactly how much you had to drink. Otherwise, your “underestimations” could haunt you during the trial.
  • Don’t Volunteer to Perform Field Sobriety Tests
    While there is a penalty for refusing to submit to a chemical test ( breath, blood or urine test), in many states there is no penalty for refusing to submit to the field sobriety tests including the “walk and turn” or “one leg stand.”

If you are asked to take the field sobriety tests, ask if it is voluntary. If it is, we suggest that you politely refuse to take it. Since these tests are recorded on the officer’s dash cam, any evidence acquired from the tests would be used against you in court. It’s just not worth contributing to the evidence against you.

Facing DUI charges? Contact an Orange County DUI lawyer from the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc.!