There must be a probable, valid cause for law enforcement to pull over a driver. Does the vehicle have expired tags? Did the driver run through a red light or not stop completely at a stop sign? Was the driver speeding or swerving? Does the car have an equipment violation like a burned-out tail light? A missing license plate?
No one should ever drink and drive. Mistakes happen and people believe they are OK to get behind the wheel after only one drink but then drive erratically or exhibit signs of intoxication behind the wheel that might lead law enforcement to pull the car over for a suspected OUI. Making unsafe lane changes, tailgating, veering in and out of lanes and other such behavior will likely lead to being pulled over and questioned by police.
When law enforcement is signaling to pull over, it is important to do so as quickly and safely as possible. Once safely to the side, the car should be turned off, windows rolled down and wait for the officer to come to the window. Don’t start rummaging around or look for a driver’s license, registration or anything else until asked to do so, as the officer may mistake any actions to be those of attempting to hide evidence or reach for a weapon.
Once the officer is at the window, he or she will likely ask if the driver knows why he has been pulled over. It’s best to say, “no” because it could be something as simple as a light out. If this is the case, the officer may just write a quick ticket and be done. The less the driver says, the better. Stay silent and polite. Actions and words can heedlessly give the officer probable cause or reason to suspect drinking & driving.
If the stop began unlawfully, the most experienced criminal defense attorney can argue that there were no legal grounds to have been pulled over in the first place. If a stop violated the driver’s constitutional rights, any evidence obtained can’t be used against the driver.
The Bottom Line: Don’t drink and drive!! Driving safely, following the rules of the road, and making sure a vehicle is not in violation of state motor vehicle laws are the most effective ways to avoid getting pulled over by the police. Whatever the case, police officers must have a valid reason to suspect that the driver or the vehicle was involved in some type of traffic violation or criminal act. The officer cannot simply have a hunch something is wrong or pull vehicles over at random. If you feel you or a loved one was pulled over illegally, you will need the best criminal defense attorney. Call me immediately. Let me help you. 513.260.2099