If you get pulled over for suspicion of DWI, here are 5 things you should do:
Find A Safe Location To Pull Over
At the very moment an officer decides to pull you over for suspicion of DWI, they start observing everything you do so they can put it in the police report.
One of the first things the officer will take note of is how you pull over. If you are driving erratically or you slow down too abruptly, it will be noted down in the police report. The officer will also make not of whether or not you pull over in an unsafe location.
Avoid Making Any Sudden Movements
Police officers are trained to be suspicious. Any sudden movements can set them off and the situation can quickly escalate and get out of control.
So please, do not make any sudden movements. Once you have safely pulled over, keep your hands on the wheel at 10 and 2 o’clock until the officer approaches the window.
Always Be Polite
Being polite can go a long ways in keeping you from getting arrested. Especially if you really aren’t driving under the influence. If you are rude the officer is more likely to arrest you and try to get you convicted by writing an incriminating police report.
Avoid Answering Incriminating Questions
This tip is extremely important because anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of law. While an officer may ask you many different questions, by law you are not required to answer them.
The only thing you are legally required to do is give your name, license, registration and insurance information.
If the officer asks if you have been drinking, you can politely answer by saying, “I apologize but I have been advised not to answer any questions”.
The officer may not like this answer and may continue pressuring you for answers. You may even be arrested. But just remember you never want to say anything that will incriminate yourself.
If you do decide to answer a question, make sure you are honest. If you lie you will be incriminating yourself and it will be held against you in court.
So when in doubt, it is best to keep your mouth closed and politely decline to answer any questions.
Refuse To Take A Field Sobriety Test
Legally you are under no obligation to take a field sobriety test. While they are effective tools for officers to use when they are trying to collect evidence against you, they are not reliable indicators of whether or not you have been drinking.
Please note refusing to get a field sobriety test may result in your license being suspended. However, it is best that you wait until you get to the station to have a chemical test which is scientific and way more reliable.
You should also avoid taking a hand-held breathalyzer test as they are just as unreliable as a field sobriety test.
Once you get to the station you will be legally obligated to take a chemical test. If given the option between a blood test or breath test, DWI attorneys recommend taking the breath test as they are more unreliable.
When a test in unreliable the attorney can effectively attack its validity in court. If the judge agrees your chances of getting off will greatly increase.
The idea is to give yourself the best chance to beat the case. If you take a field sobriety or breathalyzer test you put your fate in the hands of the officer and that usually doesn’t turn out in your favor.