A DUI or a DWI is a very serious offense and being pulled over for driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while impaired (DWI) in Maryland is not a fun experience. Your first instinct may be to panic, but knowing your rights and how to protect yourself can help relieve some of that anxiety. Knowing your rights when you are pulled over may not prevent you from being arrested, but it can make the situation less damaging to your case. What should you do when you’re faced with a possible DUI charge?
Pull over safely
When the police officer pulls up behind you with his lights flashing, find a safe place to pull over. Put on your turn signal and pull over slowly. Police begin their DUI observations immediately and how you pull over can impact their perception of you. Stay in your car and do not make any sudden movements.
Be polite and respectful
Have your license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance ready to go when the officer approaches your vehicle. Greet the officer and be courteous. Remember that the police officer may be wearing a body camera and that your actions may be recorded.
Do not answer questions you are not required to answer
The only information you are required to give the officer when you are pulled over is your name, your license, and your proof of insurance. The officer will ask you if you’ve been drinking and what you are doing, but you can politely refuse to answer these questions. Any statements you make to the police officer that can be construed as an admission of drinking may be used against you.
Refuse to take the field sobriety tests
These tests involve exiting your vehicle and performing a series of physical actions so the officer can observe whether you are impaired. These tests are subjective and easy to manipulate. There are also some factors that can cause you to fail the tests even if you’re sober. It is best to politely refuse to take the field sobriety tests. If you are pulled over for a DUI, you are most likely to be arrested regardless of whether you submit to the tests or not.
If you are arrested, contact an experienced Maryland DUI attorney
If you’ve been arrested for a DUI or DWI, you need an experienced attorney on your side. At Alpert Schreyer, LLC, our attorneys will work hard to get you the best possible outcome. Contact us online or call us at 866-444-6363 for a free consultation.