Traffic Stops Involving a DUI
Traffic Stops Involving a DUI/DWI
Swerving and not paying attention, maybe you are distracted and run a stop sign. Many DUI/DWI arrests will start when a driver has been pulled over by the police. Police need to have a valid reason when pulling you over. It could be as simple as a backlight being out which is a traffic violation.
However, most law enforcement will pull over the motorist due to signs of being impaired by alcohol. This may include, swerving over the white lines, running a stop light, or running a stop sign while operating a motor vehicle. If the police have a reasonable suspicion the driver will be stopped.
Although most DUI cases are different. Most DWI/DUI investigations will involve observation, questioning, roadside testing, breathalyzer, and more. To learn more about traffic stops involving a DUI/DWI read the following.
In most cases, after being stopped the officer will begin by asking for license and registration. During this time the police officer is observing how you interact and if you are showing any signs of impairment. Signs of impairment include being clumsy with your license and registration, not showing eye contact or if they smell alcohol or a drug substance such as marijuana.
Being Questioned by the Officer
Many drivers will usually state if they had a drink or two with dinner or friends. Additionally, the driver will underestimate the legal limit in hopes that the officer will believe them.
Most cases the reason why the police officer is asking if you’ve had anything to drink tonight is due to the reason, they stopped you. Additionally, once the motorist admits to having a drink or two, most cops will then ask more questions if they suspect you were driving while ability impaired.
Just remember, according to our Fifth Amendment, you have the right to remain silent. Therefore, you do not have to respond to the officer asking questions. Depending on the offender’s circumstance they have the decision to answer the questions if best for them.
Testing Along the Road
After the police officer questions, the offender who may be drinking and driving. If you are operating under the influence, they will often ask the offender to step out of the vehicle where some testing may take place. These are known as field sobriety tests or breathalyzer tests. Just remember, in the state of Texas, these tests are not mandatory.
Field Sobriety Tests
There are three tests that are included in a field sobriety test. Those tests are the one leg stand, the walk and turn test, and the horizontal gaze nystagmus.
These tests were developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in the 1970s. The purpose of these tests are so the officers can determine the driver’s level of intoxication.
If the police suspect you’ve been operating while intoxicated and pull you over you may have heard of the portable breath test machine. This device is the police officer’s portable breathalyzer machine to test your breaths alcohol level. This device is not as reliable as a blood or breath test given in the hospital or the police station. The sole purpose of this device is to determine if they have cause for a DUI/DWI arrest.
Under the Texas state law, it is the officer’s choice which test is permitted. They can choose to do the test at the vehicle or wait until the station or hospital. However, they will need to do the test as soon as possible.
Blood, Breath, and Urine DUI/DWI Testing
During a DUI/DWI investigation, Chemical testing is critical. Chemical testing includes blood, breath, and urine testing. In the state of Texas, it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol content of .08% or more. For the officer to arrest the motorist, they would need to prove his blood alcohol content BAC level and that requires test results.
Implied Consent Defense
In the state of Texas, we have what is called Implied Consent Defense. This means that if you accept a driver’s license, you are consenting to submit a blood, breath, or urine test. This law will warrant the drivers consent for such testing.
Refusing a DUI/DWI Blood or Breath Test
In the state of Texas, if you refuse to take a blood or breathalyzer test, the offender can face certain consequences. These consequences include, but not limited to, license suspension, fines and/or having to install an ignition interlock device. This device is also known as an IID device.
Can the Police Search Your Car?
During a DUI stop, if the officer has a reason to believe there is evidence inside your vehicle, they do not need a warrant to search. For example, if an officer smells or happens to see evidence during the DWI/DUI stop such as drugs, they do not need a warrant. Therefore, the officer can search your trunk, glove box and any items you may have such as purses or backpacks.
Arrested for a DUI/DWI
After the officer determines that the motorist was driving under the influence. They will then take the offender to the police departments local jail. The officer will then cite you for the offense and book you. Once this is done, it’s important you contact our DUI attorneys.
After the motorist has been arrested for a DUI/DWI. Their driver’s license will typically be taken. In return, they will give you a temporary paper permit. This permit will only be effective until the decision has been made through the courts.
After being arrested for a DUI/DWI, you will be in jail until you are bailed out or the judge releases you. Typically, if you’re arrested at the beginning of a weekend you may have to spend the entire weekend there. However, you may not stay in the entire weekend if you are bailed out by a friend or family member.
Arrested for a DUI/DWI? Don’t Plea, Call Me!
If you live in Lubbock County, Potter County, Randall County, Dallas County, Denton County, Midland County or Tarrant County, contact our law firm Texas Criminal Defense Group today for a review of your DWI or DUI case. We are the DWI Attorneys you want on your side specializing in DWI cases. Driving while intoxicated DWI and DUI punishments are serious, and with that seriousness you need a legal team that will fight for protecting your rights.