Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a serious crime, which is why police all over the country are cracking down more than ever before.
If you’re pulled over for suspicion of DUI, knowing which steps to take (and what to avoid) can help protect your legal rights in Georgia. Here’s what you need to do:
- Slow down and safely pull over: For example, if you’re on a city street, look for a parking lot where you can pull over away from traffic. Also, activate your hazard lights so the officer knows that you see them and are not trying to get away.
- Stay where you are: Making a sudden movement, such as getting out of your vehicle, puts your safety at risk. Stay in your seat and keep your hands on the wheel. Once the officer arrives, follow their directions, which typically starts with providing a copy of your license, registration and proof of insurance.
- Don’t answer incriminating questions: You don’t want to fabricate a story, but at the same time you shouldn’t answer incriminating questions that could result in your arrest.
- Remain polite: Don’t give the officer another reason to believe you’re under the influence. If you lash out verbally and/or physically, you could face additional criminal charges, which only complicates your case.
If you’re fortunate, you’ll drive away from the scene without trouble. But this doesn’t always happen, as there’s a chance you could be put under arrest for suspicion of driving under the influence.
If this happens, remain quiet and follow directions as you’re taken to a local station for processing. This isn’t a time to talk to anyone, including the officer or passengers in your vehicle. You never know if you’ll slip and say something that will be used against you in court.
Once you’re processed, you can then turn your focus to the events surrounding your arrest and the next steps. It’s critical to understand the legal process, as this allows you to plan accordingly as to protect your legal rights.
There are a variety of DUI defense strategies to consider, so take your time as you learn more about the finer details and how to position yourself to fight the charges.