Being stopped by law enforcement officers at a DUI roadblock is an intimidating and uncomfortable experience if you don’t know what to expect. How you act and speak at a stop can make or break the officer’s decision to pursue further investigation.
If stopped by police at a DUI roadblock, maintain control of your emotions before and during the interaction with law enforcement officers. Speak only when spoken to, keep your answers short, and, above all, be polite.
Pay close attention to everything said by the officers and avoid submitting to any field sobriety tests. Never display aggressive or irritating behavior, as it is guaranteed to annoy the officers and increase your chances of arrest for DUI.
DUI charges are best met with a skilled Miami DUI lawyer to represent you in court. Your lawyer will prepare your defense and examine the circumstances surrounding your arrest to defend your case. With the right lawyer, it is possible to beat a DUI charge if there was improper procedure or testing during the arrest.
Follow this advice the next time you come across a DUI roadblock.
Stop Soon and Where It’s Safe
The police have the right to stop your vehicle if they have “reasonable suspicion” that you are driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Impaired driving due to alcohol and drug use by drivers is a leading cause of death in Florida. Therefore, law enforcement officials treat this crime with a very serious zero-tolerance policy.
You are obligated to pull over if an officer instructs you to do so. Check the area ahead and pull off the road onto the shoulder of the lane to avoid creating a road hazard for other vehicles. Turn off your vehicle and radio and place your hands on the wheel. Only remove your seatbelt on the officer’s instruction.
Understand the Police Officer’s Situation
How you handle the initial meet and greet with the law enforcement official at your window determines a majority of the engagement to come. Greet the officer pleasantly but don’t be overly friendly. You need to understand that the officer is there to do their job and protect the safety of the public. Have respect for their work and their authority.
Officers often experience hostility and other negative emotions during encounters with the public. By taking a different approach, you play on the empathy of the officer and make them more likely to cut you a break. If the interaction with the officer goes poorly, call your DUI attorney in Miami immediately.
Law Enforcement Officers Will Ask for ID and Proof of Insurance
Police officers have no idea who you are or what your intentions are. Requesting driver’s license identification is the first part of their procedure to prove who you are. Officers will also need to see your insurance to determine that you’re legally driving the vehicle.
Failure to provide this critical information is a red flag to officers. They have the right to detain you while they confirm your identity and continue with the investigation of your physical condition and your vehicle.
When to Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent
The right to remain silent ensures that you don’t say anything that could incriminate yourself. However, officers will question you and refusal to answer their questions may involve your arrest.
Sometimes it is better to remain silent if you are inebriated, saying something like, “I just had a couple of beers” could be used against you in court. Reserve your right to remain silent and call your attorney.
You Have a Right to Request Information from the Officer
You have the right to to be informed of certain information by the law enforcement officer.
Officers must inform you of your right to refuse a breathalyzer test, as well as tell you that you are under arrest and the charges you are facing. Failure of an officer to provide this information could feature as part of your DUI defense, so consult your criminal lawyer in Miami for legal advice.
What to Do Afterwards
If arrested, call your Miami criminal defense attorney immediately. Ask the officer if you can make the call before they place you in handcuffs so your attorney can meet you at the police station when you arrive.
Your lawyer will arrange your bail and be present for your court appearance. Trying to navigate the complex legal environment without any professional assistance could mean that you spend the night in jail instead of going home.
Stroleny Law, P.A. handles a variety of criminal law cases, so call now if you have any questions.