Of course, the best practice possible is to avoid drinking and driving all together. However, when the best practices are not observed and an individual finds themselves being arrested for a DUI the following information can be helpful.
Quite often when our law firm gives seminars to the public about how to handle a DUI we ask the following question, “Are the police our friends”, to which we get various responses. The correct answer is, “It depends on the situation”. If one finds him/herself being robbed or assaulted then the police are your friends. If one has been drinking and is being pulled over by a blue flashing light under the suspicion of impaired driving, the police will not be so friendly.
Firstly, after being pulled over, the police officer will ask you for your drivers license, proof of insurance, and for your registration. You are required by law to provide these legal documents. If the police officer asks you if you’ve been drinking, do your level best not to reply with a direct answer. By all means remain polite and non-confrontational, but do NOT admit to guilt, and do not lie to the officer under any circumstances. You could respond to the officer’s question with a question of your own, for example:
Police officer, “Sir, have you been drinking?”
Driver, “Excuse me officer, why did you pull me over?”
It’s critical to note here that you have three specific rights you need to invoke clearly.
The first is the 4th amendment which protects you against unlawful search and seizure.
The next is the 5th amendment which protects you against self incrimination and gives you the right to remain silent. The last is the 6th amendment which gives you the right to have an attorney present when being questioned by law enforcement when you are in custody.
If the police officer asks you to step out of the car to complete a field sobriety test you have the right to REFUSE. You also have the right to REFUSE the PAS side of the road breathalyzer test. By the time the officer asks you to step out of the car you are most likely already going to be arrested. The field sobriety tests serve only one purpose. It gives the officer an opportunity to gather more information to use against you. When taken into custody and brought to the station you must submit to a breathalyzer test or a blood test or you will automatically lose your license for a year. If there are no other chemicals in your system, a blood test is the best option and the most accurate. If you have other chemicals in your system and you are suspected of drinking and driving, take the breathalyzer test.
Due to the 6th amendment, when being questioned by the police you have the right to have an attorney present. He will best advise you about how to protect your rights.
Provide drivers license, proof of insurance, and registration when asked
Do NOT admit guilt
Do not lie
You can refuse a field sobriety test.
You can refuse a road side breathalyzer test
You will most likely be arrested and taken to the Police department and charged with DUI
If you have only been drinking alcohol and have no other chemicals in your system opt for the blood test
Get a good attorney
Having the right information and representation can make the difference between being charged with a DUI and keeping your record clean. Call us at Seneca Law Group (619) 630-8LAW, or visit our web site at http://senecalawgroup.com/.
(The content of this blog was produced by Seneca Law Group. The blog was so eloquently written by internationally renowned professional writer and marketing consultant “Cora Blue”. If you would like to see more of her writing go to http://maydensvoyage.blogspot.com/)
This blog and its contents are not intended as legal advice and are only informational. Seneca Law Group is a law firm located in California and any information in this blog is related only to California law. None of the information in this blog should be relied upon in court proceedings without consulting an attorney. Each case is different and the law is always changing. If you have a legal problem please feel free to contact us today!