Summer is in full swing. It's time for the backyard barbecues and weekend social events. If you drink, it's time to start thinking about the possible DUI. You might not think you're impaired, but that doesn't mean that a police officer won't have a reason to pull you over at some point this summer. If they do, your actions during the stop can either help or hinder your case if you happen to be charged with a DUI. Here are four simple steps you should take if you're pulled over for a DUI this summer.
Pull Off the Road
Whether there's the possibility that you're impaired, or not, as soon as you see the lights in your rear view mirror, you need to pull off the road, and park. This is crucial. You don't want to give the officers any reason to suspect that you might be trying to evade. If you're in the fast lane, and can't get over right away, slow down, and turn your signal on. This will let the officer know that you've seen them, and you're attempting to cooperate.
Once you've pulled off the road, turn your car off, and wait for the officer to approach. Don't make any sudden moves during your wait. Instead, sit still, and put your hands on your steering wheel. This will allow the approaching officer to see both your hands, which will help reduce the stress of the situation. Not only that, but sitting still while you're waiting in the vehicle will prevent the dash cam from picking up movements that could be used against you later, if you happen to be arrested.
Keep Your Answers Brief
If you've been pulled over for a DUI, you might want to try and clear yourself while you're talking to the officer. That's the worst thing you can do. Telling the officer that you "only had one beer a few hours ago" isn't going to help you, especially if the officer can still smell alcohol on your breath. Instead, answer the questions you're asked, but avoid offering additional information that could end up hurting your case later.
If you fail any part of the field sobriety test, chances are good that you're going to be arrested. Now's the time to stay as calm as you can. Becoming belligerent, combative, or disrespectful, isn't going to help you avoid arrest. In fact, it will probably result in additional charges against you. Remain calm, and respectful, throughout the process.
If you're pulled over for a DUI this summer, use the tips provided here to avoid problems during the stop. If you're arrested, ask to speak to a criminal attorney as soon as possible. Once you're arrested, remember that you don't have to answer any questions without your attorney present, and you shouldn't. For more legal advice about how to handle a DUI, contact a law firm such as Pollack & Ball LLC.