Top 7 Things You Should Always Do When Stopped on Suspicion for DUI:

Posted by Holly Pederson | Dec 01, 2016 | 0 Comments

1. Always be polite and courteous to the police officer. He or she will ask you for your driver's license, registration, and proof of insurance. Provide the police officer with these documents.

2. Do not take the bait and answer the police officer's following questions: (1) why you believe he or she stopped you; and/or (2) why you committed a certain traffic infraction (e.g. speeding, failure to use turn signal, etc).

Any response can and will be used against you. The best response is no response. Simply respectfully decline to answer any of these questions.

3. Do not answer any questions or attempt to explain away the police officer's suspicions of your alcohol or drug consumption. You will not be able to talk your way out of a DUI. The more you talk, the more opportunities you are allowing the police officer to smell and/or observe you.

4. Weigh the pros and cons of submitting to the Portable Breath Test (PBT) at the scene. This is a voluntary test, and the purpose of the test is for the officer to establish probable cause to arrest you. Unlike the Breathalyzer Test, the PBT results will not be used as evidence against you at trial. Your refusal of the PBT test, however, can be used against you at trial. 

5. Weigh the pros and cons of submitting to the Field Sobriety Tests. These tests are also voluntary. However, there are two purposes for this test. First, the police officer uses the results of these tests to establish probable cause to arrest you. Second, the prosecutor may use the results of these tests as evidence against you at trial. At the same time, however, your refusal to submit to these tests can also be used as evidence against you.

6. Do not answer any of the police officer's questions during the DUI Interview. The police officer will ask you a lot questions, including how much alcohol or drugs you consumed, when was the last time you consumed alcohol or drugs,  and if you take any prescribed or non-prescribed drugs. I repeat - do not answer any of these questions!

7. Always request to speak to an attorney before deciding whether or not to submit to the Breathalyzer Test. This may be a public defender or an attorney not of your choosing; however, I still recommend you speak with the on-call attorney to weigh the pros and cons of submitting to the Breathalyzer Test, given the specific facts of your situation.

About the Author

Holly Pederson

Holly Esworthy is the Principal Attorney and Owner at Pederson Law, PLLC, a firm located in Wenatchee, Washington.


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