Washington law enforcement officers take DUI seriously and are constantly on the lookout for individuals whose driving is impaired by drugs or alcohol.
When you are STopped for DUI in Spokane, WA
Many DUI stops result in an arrest, prosecution, conviction, and sentence, which may consist of large fines, the loss of driving privileges, and time behind bars.
It is important to know what to do if stopped for a DUI so that you can provide your DUI lawyer with the best defense options possible.
In Washington, you must quickly pull over once a law enforcement has signaled the need to do so. Pull over as soon as it is safe to do so, preferably away from traffic and in a safe location.
If you do not promptly pull over, you run the risk of antagonizing the police officer and starting the traffic stop in a negative manner. Law enforcement officers may even consider such acts as fleeing or resisting arrest, leading to other criminal charges or negative information included in the police report that is later explained in court, in a way that puts a negative light on you.
Before a law enforcement officer can stop you, he or she must suspect that you have committed a traffic infraction or violated another law. For example, if you were speeding or weaving in and out of lanes, the law enforcement officer may stop you and can then conduct a DUI stop.
When you are stopped for DUI in Spokane WA, carefully follow the instructions of the law enforcement officer.
Be polite and cooperative. Provide your license, registration and insurance information upon request. Roll your window all the way down so that the officer can see you and so that you do not appear suspicious. If the law enforcement officer asks you to turn your car off, do so. Place your hands on the steering wheel and keep them there.
However, also consider your rights. You may choose not to answer if the officer asked if you have been drinking.
Understand the Implied Consent Law
Washington’s implied consent law requires all motorists in the state to give a breath sample to test for alcohol impairment by virtue of driving in the state.
Every motorist is said to have agreed to this ahead of time due to this law. The law also allows the law enforcement officer to authorize a blood draw from a DUI suspect.
If you refuse to give a breath test, you will be subject to an automatic one-year revocation of your driving privileges.
Do Not Take Field Sobriety Tests
Field sobriety tests are not mandated by the implied consent law like the breath test. These tests are designed to detect impairment.
However, they are often associated with unreliable results. They are also not appropriate for certain individuals, such as the elderly, obese, or individuals with various medical conditions.
Additionally, most law enforcement officers who use them do so with the intent to find impairment rather than to disprove impairment. The results of the test are likely to be used as evidence in court, so you may wish to consider refusing to take them.
Get a Spokane DUI Lawyer
If you are facing DUI charges, it is critical that you contact an experienced DUI lawyer. He or she may be able to help you avoid or minimize negative effects stemming from a DUI arrest, such as losing your driver’s license, jail time, and fines.
It is important that you have someone on your side who is knowledgeable about the DUI law and court procedures regarding them if you are stopped for DUI.