Getting pulled over by the police can be nerve-wracking even when you don’t think you’ve done anything wrong. If you’ve had a drink or two, sirens and flashing lights can be even more disconcerting. Not knowing exactly what you should and should not do makes it worse. If you’ve ever wondered how to handle a situation where you’re pulled over by police, consult a Georgia DUI attorney.
How a Georgia DUI Attorney Would Advise Clients on Police Stops
It probably goes without saying that you should pull over as soon as you can safely do so. It’s best to choose a well-lit location where people can see you, if possible. Everything you do from that point will be under scrutiny. You will, therefore, need to be careful about things that may seem minor. For example, it is a good idea to always have your license and proof of insurance within easy reach. If you take a long time to locate them or you fumble, the officer may believe you are impaired.
You should also make sure you are polite to the officer. Even if you think they had no reason to stop you, give them the benefit of the doubt. If your statements are being recorded, you don’t want to say or do anything that can hurt you later. Simply provide any documents or identification information the officer asks for. Don’t talk more than is necessary and never answer questions about drinking. If you talk too much, the officer may use the way you speak as an indication that you’re somehow impaired. If you have passengers in the vehicle, make sure they also limit their statements to the police. They should only respond to questions regarding their identity.
Why a Georgia DUI Attorney Would Advise against Agreeing to Field Sobriety Tests
If the officer suspects you are under the influence, he may ask you to take a field sobriety test. This may involve counting, walking or displaying agility and your ability to balance. The officer may also want to do a roadside breath test. You have the right to refuse to take these tests. If you’re sober but tired or stressed, you can easily fail when asked to walk in a straight line. If you haven’t had anything to drink, you can consent to a breath test. In any case, you should note that the results of these tests are not admissible in court. Roadside breathalyzers are known to be inaccurate. Also, even one or two drinks can put you over the legal 0.08 percent blood alcohol concentration.
If you refuse the tests and the officer believes you are impaired, he’ll likely take you to the station. You can refuse the breathalyzer test there as well but there will be a strict penalty. This is because of Georgia’s implied consent laws. Based on these laws, everyone who drives on the state’s roads has already given consent to chemical tests. Prosecutors can use the results of the in-station test in court. Refusing the test will hurt your case as they will use your refusal to argue that you had something to hide. There will also be administrative consequences. The Georgia Department of Driver Services will suspend your license for one year. You won’t even be able to get a limited license to drive to work or school. However, if you are convicted of a first offense DUI, you may be able to get a hardship license. This is possible if you have no other means of transportation.
Reach Out to a Georgia DUI Attorney Today for a Consultation
If you need advice about what to do when pulled over for a DUI, consult a Georgia DUI attorney. At Athens DUI Lawyers, we have handled several DUI cases and we know all the factors which come into play. Contact us today to discuss your case. We will represent your interests in court and fight for a fair outcome. Don’t delay in scheduling a consultation.