If you are under investigation for driving under the influence, it’s important for you to know the steps to take to avoid serious repercussions from a conviction. It’s possible to avoid a DUI conviction in some cases, so long as you take the steps needed to protect yourself. Even if a conviction is impossible to avoid, taking these steps may help minimize the penalties you face.
When you’re stopped by an officer, there are three steps you need to take at the scene, upon arrest and once you are at the police station. Here’s what you should remember.
When you’re stopped, maintain composure
The first thing to do is to remember that the way you act can influence your case. An officer can claim that you were impaired, but if you were reasonable and respectful, then that could help you prove that you weren’t. Any time an officer pulls you over, respect them and follow their directions. They may ask you to take a Breathalyzer test. In most cases, it’s a good idea to take it, because refusing will cost you your license.
If you’re arrested, don’t say anything
If the officer takes a breath sample and has you perform field sobriety tests but decides that you failed, you’ll be placed under arrest for a DUI. At that point, you may not yet have been read your Miranda rights. Don’t say or do anything at this point that could be construed as an admission of guilty or that could make you look unruly.
At the police station, ask for your attorney
The police may ask you to answer questions or for a short interview. You should ask for your attorney at that point. It’s smart to learn more about your legal rights before you talk to the police, so that you don’t say something that could hurt your case.
By taking these three steps, you may improve your odds of minimizing the penalties you face or having the entire charge dropped. You need to know how to protect your rights and avoid actions that could hurt your case.