What To Do if You Get Pulled Over

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Yesterday, we posted about what to do to avoid getting pulled over. With Memorial Day starting for some people already, DUI checkpoints will be in full-force this weekend all across the country. (Here’s a list of some Memorial Day Weekend DUI checkpoints.)

If you have taken plenty of precautions and still get pulled over, it is understandable that you would feel flustered and intimidated. It is important to stay calm and collected. I’ve been working in the DUI business for years and here is what I think you should do if you get pulled over. Please note that this is not official legal advice. The most important thing you can do is hire an attorney.

DO:

Have your paperwork handy. If you are rummaging through your car like a maniac looking for your license, registration, and proof of insurance, it could read to the officer that you are under the influence. Keep those documents in your wallet or safely organized in a glove compartment.

Be polite. The only information you are required to tell the officer is your name (along with handing him or her your paperwork.) You do not need to answer any of the officer’s questions. Be sure to respond politely. You can say, “I apologize, but I do not wish to respond to that question until my attorney is present.”

Take an evidentiary breath test or request a blood test. When an officer requests that you take a BAC test, first ask if it is a PAS test (a preliminary alcohol-screening test) or an evidentiary test. You are not required to take a PAS test, but you are required to take an evidentiary one. It is best for you to ask to be taken to the station for a blood test. If that is not possible, be sure the breathalyzer test is evidentiary.

DON’T:

Like I said, you do not have to answer any question. You also don’t have to take a field sobriety test. (In some cases, it might be better if you don’t take a test, especially if you feel flustered or have a physical hindrance from performing the test adequately.)

To summarize, the only requirements when getting pulled over is stating your name, handing over your paperwork, and taking an evidentiary BAC test. Above all, be cooperative and hire a lawyer as soon as you can.

Today's Notable DUIs

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Not one, but two doctors have been arrested for DUIs recently. One doctor was even on his way to surgery! Was he intending on performing surgery while drunk? I suppose this DUI arrest saved more lives than we think…

Joyce DeWitt, Probation is Waiting for You. Joyce DeWitt, who played Janet on my favorite rerun (Three’s Company), received a three year probation for her DUI last year.

Another Person Added to the “Two-in-One-Day File”. A HI woman received two DUIs in one day, each DUI within five hours of each other. I bet she had a terrific day.

Tips for Not Getting Pulled Over This Weekend

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As we all know, the police keep a close eye out for drunk drivers during holiday weekends. This Memorial Day Weekend, people have more of a chance of getting pulled over. To avoid this, it is important to be aware of checkpoints. (We posted some Memorial Day Checkpoints in our last post.) There are a few other things you can do to avoid those dreaded red and blue lights flashing in your rearview mirror.

Make Sure Your Car is in Good Condition

Many times, cops pull people over with a broken taillight or blinkers. The cops end up charging these drivers with a DUI if they sense he or she is intoxicated. Make sure everything in your car is working properly.

Additionally, make sure your tags are up to date. Cops can pull you over for that, too.

Obey Traffic Laws

This is pretty obvious, but we all have had moments where we forget to signal or don’t come to a complete stop at a stop sign. Take extra precaution this weekend and don’t take any chances – no matter how small they seem.

Have Your Paperwork Handy

Don’t drive without your license and make sure your registration and proof of insurance are easily accessible. When you’re fumbling around your glove compartment looking for your documents, you could give the officer the wrong idea that you’re inebriated. Keep your documents in a place where you can easily grab them and show them to the officer.

Don’t drink and drive.

I mean, come on…

Memorial Day Checkpoints

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I bet you’re as antsy as I am for this weekend, but just know that DUI officers are just as antsy.
There are DUI checkpoints all over the country this weekend. Be safe and responsible.

Here’s a comprehensive list of some checkpoints that will be happening this weekend.

Lake Tahoe

Vermont

Boulder, Colorado

Las Cruces, New Mexico

Columbus, Ohio

Lee County, Florida

Highland and Victorville in San Bernadino County

Cherokee County, Oklahoma

Southwest Ohio

Oregon – statewide

Idaho – statewide – There will also be seatbelt enforcement.

Nashville, Tennessee

San Francisco

Los Angeles, CA

Utah – statewide

Oh the Lindsanity!

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Today's Notable DUI Stories

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Lindsay Lohan Finally Goes to Court. You can breathe a sigh of relief now.

After participating in a court ordered treatment program, Rip Torn has been cleared of his Connecticut DUI charges. However, he’s also charged with breaking into a bank while intoxicated. Hasn’t he ever heard of the phrase, “Thieves don’t let thieves rob drunk”?

What’s the best way to keep teens from drinking and driving? Finding out Monday morning that their principal got a DUI.

LA Checkpoints this Weekend

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Notable DUI Offenders of the Week

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Kennedy Gets DUI – Ah, that headline feels familiar. Mary Richardson Kennedy, the wife of Robert F. Kennedy Jr., received a DUI this Saturday.

Jail Has Sunday Brunch and Polo, Right? –John Goodman (no, not the guy who played Walter in The Big Lebowski) has been charged with vehicular homicide and DUI manslaughter. Goodman is the founder of the International Polo Club in Palm Springs. He was held on $100,000 bail which was paid within hours of the arrest.

This has been a really tough week for me (and by “me”, I mean Lindsay Lohan) – First we’re all proud of her that she’s attending her DUI classes. Then, she personally disappoints the entire world for missing her court date. (That’s a BIG no-no.) We find out she is in Cannes and there is a warrant for her arrest. However, now, her legal team posted bail and everything will be okay. Oh boy, Lindsay. Thanks for providing this drama, now that Law and Order got canceled.

Girl Scout Leader Finally Gets her DUI Badge – I love Thin Mints. However, if you’re inebriated, I can wait until you’re sober to drive the troupe to sell cookies.

A 911 Call – Enough Evidence to Pull Someone Over

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The Newspaper reported that Utah police can now pull a driver over if a third party calls 911 to report that a drunk driver is about to get on the road.

On August 8th, 2005, Annalee McCaine phoned the police to inform them that her drunk boyfriend at the time was behind the wheel. McCaine informed police that she and her boyfriend, Jose Baltarcar Roybal, had been drinking and had an argument.

Police Sergeant Chat Ledford stopped Roybal following the call. Ledford claimed that he did not pull Roybal over solely based on the phone call. Ledford claims he witnessed Roybal driving recklessly when he was dispatched.

The court argued whether or not Ledford’s action was a violation of the fourth amendment (the prohibition of unreasonable search and seizures.) The court discussed whether Ledford had enough reasonable evidence to stop Roybal. The state high court ended up deciding that Ledford acted in the right.

“Looking to the totality of the circumstances in the instant case, we believe the 911 call was sufficient to provide the dispatcher with reasonable suspicion that Roybal was driving under the influence,” states Justice Michael J. Wilkins.

The issue remains the source of the 911 call. Can the caller be a reliable piece of evidence to warrant an arrest – even if the caller had been drinking as well?

Thursday Evening Checkpoints

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