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DUI 101: What Should I Do If I Am Being Pulled Over?

Many people make simple mistakes when they are pulled over for DUI that could be avoided with a bit of information.  As you drive around, the chances are better than average that you could be pulled over for DUI at any time.  Here are some tips on avoiding a DUI charge or handling your case successful if you are charged with drunk driving.

  • Pull over immediately. If you flee pursuit or try to avoid a roadblock, it is going to be nearly impossible to avoid charges.  If a police officer signals you to pull over, do so slowly and safely.  Try to pull over in an area where there is plenty of light and avoid dangerous traffic.
  • Be polite. One of the best weapons you have in avoiding a DUI charge is simple courtesy.  When a police officer pulls someone over on suspicion of drunk driving, he or she is looking at the driver’s behavior.  If you are belligerent, loud and uncooperative, you are basically assuring the officer that you are under the influence, even if you have not had much to drink.  Remember that police officers may have pulled hundreds of drivers over for DUI, and they usually know what to look for.
  • Be firm. While you should always be polite to the officer, you do not have to submit to certain tests or other instructions, and you should refuse to do so firmly.  This includes field sobriety tests and having your car searched.  (However, you do not have the right to refuse to take a blood or breath test.  Doing so will result in criminal charges.)  If you are pulled over and an officer asks for your license and registration, produce them, then stay silent.  If the officer asks if you have been drinking or asks you to perform field sobriety tests, ask politely if the officer is arresting you.  If he or she says no, then nicely refuse the tests.  This will force the officer to make a decision as to whether or not you should be placed under arrest.
  • If you are arrested, be cooperative. Arrest in and of itself is not a charge.  While it may be frightening and intimidating, keep your cool.  Comply with officer requests and call your attorney as soon as you are able to do so.  Insist on speaking to your attorney so that you can arrange for a simultaneous blood test to be conducted along with the police BAC blood draw.

  If you are arrested for DUI, call the attorneys at Oswalt Law Group in Phoenix immediately.  

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