Drunk driving accidents inflict serious injuries, claim lives, and result in significant property damage. They also result in severe legal penalties. Unfortunately, even if you take precautions to never drive while legally intoxicated, you could still be charged with DUI based solely on a police officer’s observations. In other words, you could be arrested despite having consumed only a small amount of alcohol. The way you handle a DUI traffic stop can have a significant effect on the outcome of your case. Remember to contact a DUI lawyer in Columbus as soon as possible to protect your legal rights.
Cooperating with Police Officers
A criminal defense attorney would advise you to cooperate with the police officers to a certain extent. For example, you should pull over as soon as it is safe to do so, turn on your dome light if it is nighttime, and place both hands on your steering wheel while you wait for the officer to approach your vehicle. This helps assure the officer that you do not pose a safety risk. Be respectful to the officer, and provide your license and registration upon request.
Handling Questions Effectively
The police officer is likely to ask you a series of questions. You should answer basic questions about your name, address, and similar information. However, you do not have to answer any other questions. If you choose to do so anyway, your answers can be used against you. For example, if the officer asks if you’ve been drinking, you should say something like, “I don’t have anything to say about that.”
Dealing with Chemical Tests
If the officer asks you to step out of your vehicle, you must do so. However, you are not required to take sobriety tests, such as walking a straight line. Taking a sobriety test may only give the officer cause to administer a chemical test. You are legally required to take a chemical test under the implied consent rule. However, make a note of whether the officer advises you of implied consent. If he or she fails to do so, your criminal defense attorney can use this information to argue that the test results are inadmissible in court.