3 Things That Can Happen at a DUI Stop

Hanging out and watching a game on a Sunday may mean good food, great company, and some adult beverages. When it comes time to head out, you may feel like nothing can stop you. This feeling can be fleeting, though, when you get pulled over by a police officer. If you find yourself on the side of the road on suspicion of a DUI, you may want to know what to expect. Here are three things that may happen during your DUI traffic stop.

1. The Officer Observes and Questions You

When first pulled over, the officer must approach you and indicate why you were asked to stop. The officer may not pull you over on suspicion of driving drunk. Instead, they would observe you for any other traffic law you might break. Once you do, the officer can ask you to pull to the side. The officer then engages with you to find more evidence that you are under the influence. Your behavior is just as important as the way you smell or look. If you refuse to answer questions or don’t make sense, the officer might suspect you are intoxicated and may now indicate it.

2. You Are Asked to Go Through Field Sobriety Testing

Once the officer gets more evidence that you are driving impaired, you may be asked to exit the vehicle and go through a series of coordination and balance tests. While these physical, they are also testing the way you behave. These tests are designed to indicate if you can process information, such as directions, and then act on them. Some of the most popular field sobriety tests include:

  • Nystagmus gaze
  • Heel-to-toe walk
  • One-leg stand
  • Finger-to-nose touch

An officer can use your results on these tests to provide further proof of your impairment.

3. You Are Asked to Submit a Breathalyzer 

After field testing, you will likely be asked to submit to a breathalyzer or blood test. While it is your right to refuse, know that your license may be taken on the spot. Most states require that you sign an agreement when getting your license that says a condition of getting your license is your promise to submit to a breath or blood testing if asked. This is usually referred to as “implied consent.” If you do not agree, your license is taken, and you can get it back pending an investigation or per the guidelines set out in the state statutes.

Even with this evidence, your DUI case may get thrown out for a variety of reasons. A DUI attorney, like a DUI attorney in MD, may be able to assist you in defending you against the laws in your state.

Thanks to The Lawfirm of Frederick J. Brynn, P.C., for their insight into things that might happen at a DUI stop.