When you see the blue and red lights flashing behind you, your heart starts beating faster and you breathe heavier. Even if you haven’t done anything wrong, being pulled over elicits fear. Knowing what to do when stopped by the police can help you keep the situation from escalating.
When You’re First Signaled to Pull Over
When an officer signals you to pull over, it’s important to communicate that you understand and are complying. Typically, this means that you should pull over as soon as possible. However, it is reasonable to wait until you reach a well-lit destination, especially if you are alone at night.
Stay Calm and Don’t Reach for Anything Until the Officer Asks
You may think that unbuckling your seat-belt or reaching for your ID is ok, in order to get your documentation ready. However, officers are trained to look for drivers fidgeting, since they deal with people who are reaching for a gun or attempting to hide drugs or alcohol. Keep your hands on the wheel and don’t reach for anything until the officer asks you to produce something.
Be Polite, But Don’t Answer Questions
It’s never a good idea to be rude to an officer who has pulled you over. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to be chatty either. You can politely decline to answer questions by simply saying, “I have no comment on that.” Legally, you do not have to answer questions without a lawyer present. An officer may attempt to get you to incriminate yourself by asking you if you have had anything to drink, where you’re coming from, or what you’ve been doing.
Arrested? Call a Lawyer Right Away
You may be arrested and taken into custody if the officer who pulled you over suspects a crime, such as drinking and driving. If you’ve been arrested, the most important thing you can do is contact a DUI lawyer as soon as possible. Continue to decline answering questions and reach out to an attorney right away. Call J. Brian Kelley today for a consultation on how to best handle your case at (208) 735-0030.