What to Do When Stopped By the Police for a DUI: A Complete Guide

what to do when stopped by police

There are nearly 6 million car accidents per year in the United States. Many of these happen as a result of someone who’s driving while impaired by alcohol.

Driving drunk doesn’t always mean that you’re blacked out, though. Depending on your physical size and tolerance, it’s possible to get a DUI even when you feel relatively normal.

If you happen to get stopped by police in this situation, there are some things you’ll need to keep in mind.

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about what to do when stopped by the police for a DUI.

Pull Over

The longer you drive with the officer behind you, the more suspicious you become. So, it’s in your best interest to pull over immediately — even if you aren’t sure that you’re the one in trouble.

It’s important to find somewhere public and well-lit before you stop your vehicle to help ensure your safety. If questioned why you continued driving, explain that you pulled over at the first safe location you could find.

If you’ve come across a DUI checkpoint, things will be a bit different and there’s other info you need to keep in mind.

Be Polite and Obedient

One of the worst things you can do during an interaction with a law enforcement officer is to be disrespectful or fail to follow their commands.

For example, if an officer walks up to your window and asks you for your license and vehicle registration and you immediately respond with ‘why am I being pulled over?’ things can escalate fairly quickly.

Instead, listen to the officer and do so in a respectful way — you’ll save yourself a lot of potential hardship.

Don’t Incriminate Yourself

You’re legally obligated to answer an officer’s questions truthfully. But, this only applies if you choose to answer them.

While you have to give info like your name, place of residence, etc., you don’t have to answer any questions about whether or not you’ve been drinking.

Instead, you can politely declare “I’d like to have my attorney present before I answer anything else.”

Refuse a Test at The Scene

It’s imperative that you refuse both a breathalyzer test and field sobriety test after you’ve been pulled over.

It’s also important that you don’t let the officer persuade you into taking them. They may say things like ‘if you haven’t been drinking, you have nothing to worry about’ or ‘if you refuse then you’re going straight to jail.’

Regardless, it’s in your best interest to avoid these tests at all costs.

If you end up going to jail, they’ll give you either a blood test or breath test at the facility. At this point, choose the breath test since its validity can be better argued against.

Contact Your Attorney

After you’ve been released, contact an attorney immediately.

An experienced professional who specializes in this area of law is an invaluable resource when it comes to maintaining your freedom. So, call one as soon as possible when you have the opportunity.

Knowing What to Do When Stopped by the Police Can Seem Difficult

But it doesn’t have to be.

With the above information about what to do when stopped by the police in mind, you’ll be well on your way to navigating the situation appropriately.

Want to learn more lifestyle tips that can help you out in the future? Check out more of our articles.


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