What to Do During a DUI Stop
Few things strike fear into the hearts of motorists as much as getting pulled over. However, if you’ve had a drink or two or recently consumed marijuana or another drug, the experience can be overwhelming. It is important to keep in mind that just because you got pulled over doesn’t mean you are going to get arrested and certainly doesn’t mean you are going to be convicted of a DUI. However, it is important that you know what to do during a DUI stop. At the Law Office of James E. Novak, we understand that hindsight is 20/20, and, despite your best efforts, you may be facing DUI charges. We can help. With more than 20 years of experience successfully handling all types of DUI cases, we have what it takes to beat even the toughest cases.What to Do During a DUI Stop to Avoid an Arrest
If you’ve been pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence, there may be things you can do (or things you can refrain from doing) that will reduce your chances of getting arrested for a DUI. Below are a few things to keep in mind if you get pulled over for a DUI.Pull Over Immediately in a Safe Location
As soon as you see the blue and red lights in your rear-view mirror, you should start looking for a safe place to pull over. The first few seconds of a traffic stop can influence how the officer perceives you, and you don’t want the officer to think—even for a split second—that you are unwilling to stop.Don’t Raise the Officer’s Suspicions
Once you pull over, stay in your car, roll down the window and keep your eyes facing the road ahead of you. If you have quick access to your license, insurance and registration, you can gather these documents; however, you don’t want it to look like you are hiding anything. If you need to look for your documents, it’s better to wait until the officer gets to your window. You also want to keep your hands on the steering wheel, where the officer can see them.Be Polite
Police officers are human and, like everyone else, prefer to be treated with respect. Along those lines, to the extent possible, avoid arguing with the officer and do your best to comply with their basic requests.Know Your Rights
During any traffic stop, you are obligated to provide the officer with your name, driver’s license, vehicle registration and proof of car insurance. However, beyond that, you have the right to remain silent and do not need to answer any questions the officer asks you. You also have the right to refuse a breath test; however, doing so comes with administrative consequences such as a license suspension. That said, refusing a breath test isn’t always a bad idea, especially if you have prior DUIs.Do Not Consent to a Vehicle Search
If the officer asks to search your car, politely decline. You are under no obligation to let them search your car, and by giving them permission, you essentially waive the right to challenge the traffic stop in court. If an officer has probable cause to search your car, they do not need to ask for your permission.
Certainly, there are situations where an arrest is unavoidable, even if you’ve done everything right. In this case, your best move is to reach out to an experienced Tempe DUI defense attorney to have them review your case and determine what defenses may apply in your situation. In the vast majority of DUI cases, there are several defenses available; it’s just a matter of finding the best ones.Were You Recently Arrested for a Tempe DUI?
Knowing what to do during a DUI stop isn’t necessarily intuitive, and it’s common for these traffic stops to end in an arrest. If you are facing DUI charges in Maricopa County, reach out to the Law Office of James E. Novak for immediate assistance. Attorney Novak can help you identify the best possible defenses in your case to ensure that your arrest has as little impact on your future as possible. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with Attorney Novak today, call 480-413-1499. You can also connect with us through our online contact form.