If you're arrested for a DUI, you likely feel anxious and uncertain. But don't let your stress override your common sense; a misstep during this time could negatively impact how your case plays out. Below, are three actions you should avoid and why it’s so crucial to do so.
3 Common Mistakes After a DUI Arrest (do NOT do the following):
1. Admit Guilt
Do not tell the officer, other law enforcement personnel, or anyone else who is present at your arrest that you are guilty of driving while intoxicated. You have a constitutional right not to incriminate yourself, so you may choose to remain silent throughout your encounter with the police. Be polite, stay calm, and ask to speak with an attorney.
2. Agree to Field Sobriety Testing
Field sobriety testing and breathalyzers can be inaccurate indicators of a person's blood alcohol content (BAC). After an officer pulls you over, they start looking for clues you are intoxicated; however, you don't have to comply with an officer's request for field sobriety testing, no matter how aggressive (or polite) they are in their demands. You should politely decline. If you are still arrested and brought to the station or jail, you will have to submit a breath sample to determine your breath alcohol content (BrAC). This chain of events, from a DUI defense perspective, is preferable.
3. Engage the Arresting Officer More Than Is Necessary
Keep your engagement with the officer as minimal as possible. Roll down your window far enough to turn over your license, registration, and insurance card to the officer. Then, look straight ahead, avoiding eye contact. You should invoke your right to silence, and inform the officer of that, but do not be argumentative. There are still certain basic questions the officer may be permitted to ask you, but be sure to not provide any damaging or incriminating information. If you are not sure whether you should answer the question, politely decline to do so and ask that you contact your attorney before answering.
If you have been arrested for a DUI, turn to the Law Office of Philip Shanahan for the quality legal defense you need. Backed by over two decades of experience, Attorney Shanahan helps clients in Anchorage, AK, and throughout the state, secure the best possible outcome for their cases. Call (907) 334-3339 or visit his firm's website to arrange your initial consultation today.