At least once in your life you will probably be stopped by a police officer. If you have had any amount of alcohol, then being stopped for even a minor traffic infraction becomes very serious. What to do? Just remember the Nancy Reagan statement, “Just say no.” It’s important to know your legal rights when encountering a police stop.
1. When asked, you must provide the officer with your license and registration.
2. When asked if you have been drinking, you might admit drinking(unless you are under 21), but don’t say how much you have had to drink.
3. Don’t agree to any field tests on the side of the road; this includes, following the officer’s finger or pen with your eyes, walking a straight line, standing on one leg, saying your ABCs, or any blowing into a portable breath machine.
4. NEVER consent to a search of your car!
You might think that it is not nice to not cooperate with the police; after all, aren’t we taught to respect authority? And doesn’t a badge and gun mean authority? Yet, REMEMBER: Your constitutional rights take priority over any police officer’s request to submit to voluntary searches, whether such search is a field test or search of your car!
For an audio version of this post, go to defendingdriversrights.com