Tonight, as you enjoy a couple glasses of wine with your friends, you probably aren’t even worried that you could be pulled over on your way home. It wouldn’t matter anyway because you are fine. It is just a couple glasses of wine. But, tonight could be the night you see the flashing red and blue lights behind you because you didn’t stop completely, or your didn’t use your turn signal, or whatever….but you become paralyzed with fear because you realize that you did have a couple glasses of wine and it could possibly be enough to register you on tests as driving while intoxicated. The officer comes to your window. What are you going to do? This scenario happens all over the country, every single night. Do you know your rights?
As a criminal defense attorney in Ohio, the following is my advice. They are your constitutional rights. Please share it with all of your friends. Bookmark it. Remember it.
- The only guaranteed way to avoid a DUI conviction is to have a designated driver and never drink and drive.
- When you are pulled over, BE POLITE. There are absolutely no exceptions to this rule. Even if the officer is in your face. There is no need to say, “I know my rights”. As the time goes by, he will realize you know your rights.
- Once you are pulled over, absolutely exercise your right to remain silent. Say nothing. Even if you are tempted to ask what you did wrong; don’t. Anything, and I mean ANYTHING you say from that point forward will be used in court and could mean the difference between a conviction and an acquittal. When the officer asks question, shake your head “no” or simply say, “I have nothing to say”. If the officer starts pounding you with questions, remain calm and cool and DO NOT ANSWER. He is most likely trying to rattle you to talk. A simple answer to “where have you been” of “out to dinner” can bring about the next question, “have you had any drinks” and so forth. REMAIN SILENT. If you even say “I had one drink” you have just testified against yourself and the case is half proven for a DUI.
- Don’t take any tests. Period. You aren’t required to, so don’t. Not under ANY circumstance should you perform a field sobriety test. The officer can not force you to. I have had clients that have been “tricked” into thinking that they “had to” take the tests, that it was the law. It’s not. REFUSE. No. Matter. What. Even if you think that you could pass it because you only had TWO glasses of wine, don’t do it. Even sober, the tests can be tricky physically, and there is no objective to a pass or a fail. That’s it.
- CALL A GOOD CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY immediately. The only sentence you should utter is “I am calling my attorney”.
The Bottom Line: No one should drink and drive. But, many of us do because we think we are fine, and most of the time we are, with just a couple of drinks. In this case, you MUST call a criminal defense attorney, right away to get your defense started and to protect you and your freedom. Put my number in your mobile. Call me if you should find yourself in this situation. No matter the time. 513-260-2099