The Top 10 Mistakes People Make When They Are Flagged Down for DUI
Being asked by a police officer to pull over for suspected driving under the influence (DUI) is definitely a scary experience, especially if you truly are drunk. Worrying too much about what the police will do to you and the intoxication from alcohol is a deadly combination—they can greatly affect your decision-making during your encounter with the police.
During this situation, you must make no mistake or else you will find yourself suffering from penalties such as jail time, fines, suspended license and DUI written on your criminal record. These are the top ten mistakes people make that you must avoid during such situation:
- Trying to escape from the police officer
When the police asks you to pull over, never try to escape from him/her. Hurrying to get away from the police will not only push the police to add more charges, you can also have properties damaged and yourself or other people injured or even killed. When the police flash their lights behind you, do not think twice; pull over immediately so you will not get into worse trouble.
- Talking too much
This is probably the most common mistake people do in a DUI traffic stop situation. Whether you have been drinking before driving or not, do not admit anything or make any excuse as the things you say will be used against you in court.
Once the police come in contact with you, he will as you several questions to determine whether you are drunk or impaired. Giving long, confused and inconsistent answers will be enough for a DUI conviction. What you should do is to briefly provide your name, date of birth, and address, and then tell the officer that you wish to exercise your right to remain silent.
- Lying or admitting you are guilty
Admitting guilt will not make your sentence lighter and lying will not save you from conviction. People should understand that the officer is not there to help them get away with their charges. An officer’s job is to find out the truth through evidences and make sure that you will get all the penalties for your DUI case.
Do not try to lie to the police officer. Just be calm and silent. Otherwise, you will regret what you’ve done for the rest of your life.
- Defending yourself to the police officer
An understanding of Denver DUI laws does not equip you with the power of a lawyer. You cannot just defend your case to the police officer. It will not help you alleviate the situation. Instead, it can only heat up your temper and worse, you can be held down by the police officer.
- Taking the field sobriety or roadside tests
The Denver DUI laws state that the driver can either agree or refuse to take the preliminary breath test (PBT) or the breath test done on the roadside. The test will provide the police the probable cause of your DUI. However, not all drivers in Denver know about this.
The PBT is also reported to produce inaccurate results when it is not properly maintained. If it is your discretion, it is better not to give the police an evidence to be used against you.
- Not taking the breathalyzer or blood test
Colorado has an Implied Consent law—meaning having a driver’s license Colorado makes your consent to doing an alcohol breath test or blood test is “implied.” For drivers aged 21 or above, they can choose which test they prefer to take. Minors, however, are required by the law to take both tests. Refusal to take the tests will make you suffer more penalties.
- Preempting the court’s decision
If your blood alcohol content (BAC) is measured at .08 percent or higher, do not give up hope just yet. Call your lawyer immediately so you will be guided in every step of the process. Remember that your lawyer has the expertise on the field so he is the one who knows, not you. Get yourself represented and defended in court by your lawyer.
Avoid predicting or pre-empting the court’s decision especially in a way that will discourage you. Trust your lawyer that he or she will help you in any way he can.
- Not hiring a DUI lawyer
Just because you failed the breathalyzer test does not mean the fight is already over. Many drivers charged for DUI just resort to pleading guilty and do not seek the help of attorneys anymore. However, Denver drivers must know that lawyers can greatly help lower their sentence through negotiating with the district attorney or prosecutor.
Your DUI lawyer is equipped with the skills and experience needed to shorten your sentence and lower the penalties for your case. If fortunate, your lawyer can even get your case dismissed. Missing the opportunity to be helped, guided and defended by a lawyer may be a big regret among many drivers.
- Absence in the DMV hearing
It is very important that you make sure to attend the DMV hearing. It is your opportunity to testify if favour of yourself. The DMV hearing basically aims to determine whether your license and driving privileges should be revoked or retained. Failure to attend this hearing will result to an automatic suspension of your license.
- Not being able to realize the gravity of DUI conviction
DUI cases are highly prevalent in many states but that does not mean they are just simple misdemeanors. Penalties include fines, jail time and DUI included in your criminal record for life. People who drive for a living get the biggest hit because it will suspend and revoke their driving privileges, affecting their income and employment.
In Denver, DUI laws are much stricter and judges push for heaver penalties to teach drivers a lesson. The best thing to do once you are charged with DUI is to avoid the same mistakes and prevent yourself from breaking the law again.