DUI Traffic Stop Lawyers
How Do I Handle a Traffic Stop for a Suspected DUI?
Whenever a driver is stopped by a police officer, the driver should cooperate with the police officer and follow normal guidelines. If the stop is the result of suspicion of drunk driving, the officer will ask the driver questions in order to look for evidence of intoxication. If the answers provide some evidence of possible intoxication the officer will administer a field sobriety test.
Keep in mind that you cannot lie to the officer, but you also do not have to say anything that would incriminate yourself by invoking your right to remain silent or right to counsel. However, if you do refuse to answer questions most officers will administer field sobriety tests and breath test. Most jurisdictions also do not require that you be given access to counsel before breath tests are administered.
What Happens After the Field Sobriety Test?
If the officer concludes that a driver is intoxicated based on the field sobriety tests, the officer will typically administer a preliminary breath test using a portable breathalyzer. In some states, the police officer can administer a breathalyzer without a field sobriety test. These tests often can be somewhat inaccurate and unreliable, so if a driver fails a breathalyzer test the police will usually administer a blood or urine test at the police station to provide stronger evidence.
When Can the Driver Be Arrested?
The police officer can arrest the driver if, after administering the tests, there is probable cause to believe that the driver is impaired. This decision is very subjective and it is almost impossible to challenge the arrest.
Once the arrest hs been made, the officer will confiscate the driver's license and bring them to the police station where a blood test or urine test will be made to confirm the intoxication. Before the test, the police will inform you of your chemical test rights, which include the consequences of refusing to submit to a test. Since every state has implied consent laws, drivers are required to submit to these tests and every state has some penalties for refusal. If the police fail to read you these rights, you may be able to challenge any penalties that result from a refusal.
Do I Need a Lawyer?
The laws regarding drunk driving are very complex and the process involved in a drunk driving criminal charge can vary from state to state. An experienced criminal attorney can advise you of your rights and the admissibility of any tests, as well as assist you in raising any other possible defenses. A lawyer can also help you in getting your drivers license back.
Consult a Lawyer - Present Your Case Now!
Last Modified: 08-31-2010 04:40 PM PDT
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