First and foremost, the most serious mistake anyone can make is driving under the influence of too much alcohol. Judgement is impaired and a decision made that can be costly, even fatal.
Three biggest mistakes any driver can make if pulled over by law enforcement:
1. Taking a field sobriety test.
Law enforcement needs a traffic violation to be made to stop a driver but can develop probable cause to gather proof that the driver is under the influence. If you are asked to get out of the car to perform any testing, you should always say no. You are not legally required to perform any tests even if you are asked to by the officer.
2. Incriminating statements.
Remain silent. This is your right under the 5th Amendment to the United States Constitution. Police ask many questions during a DUI investigation. Usually, the first question is “Where are you coming from?” Then the next question. “Have you been drinking?”. Then another question. “How much have you had to drink?”. “Coming from the bar”, “Yes”, and “Just a couple of beers” are not good answers.
You are only required to give your license and registration to a police officer when you are pulled over. That’s it. It is illegal to lie to a police officer. The solution is to just say nothing at all. Unless you are in police custody, Miranda Warnings aren’t a requirement.
Even if you are placed under arrest and read your Miranda Rights, exercise them.
3. Not requesting a criminal defense attorney.
Everyone has the right to consult with an attorney during any criminal investigation before or after being arrested. Too many times, we see that DUI suspects don’t ask for a criminal defense attorney. You have the right. Use it. The only thing you should say is to the arresting officer is that you want to call a criminal defense attorney.
The Bottom Line: DUI investigations and prosecutions are some of the most complicated and technical cases to prosecute and defend. As a result, police officers can often make mistakes during their investigation as well. There are many legal steps and technical requirements for a DUI investigation to be properly conducted. If you or someone you know is charged with a DUI it is always advisable to consult with the best criminal defense attorney who can review your case and discover possible issues or defenses. 513.260.2099