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What Should I do If I’m Pulled Over for a DUI in Fort Lauderdale?

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What Should I do If I’m Pulled Over for a DUI in Fort Lauderdale?

It is never safe to drink and drive; that much has been proven time and time again each week in the News headlines. When you drink and drive you will likely face steep fines, a licence suspension, several years of probation, as well as possible jail time.

While driving under the influence is a serious crime in Fort Lauderdale and across the nation, just because you are pulled over by an officer under suspicion of driving under the influence does NOT mean you guilty. Below are a few tips to think about when you are stopped by the police under DUI suspicions.

Pull Over Safely

When an officer is suspicious of a driver, mentally she will start making observations that will be documented in a police report (if the situation escalates to that). As soon as you see those lights flashing behind you, make sure to carefully pull over to a safe place. This is one of the first observations an officer will make about your condition. If you pull over poorly, an officer will read it as a red flag.

Be Polite

Kindness is never overrated — being polite and showing the officer respect can be the difference between facing DUI charges, and not. If you are hostile or show resistance, an officer may deem your behavior suspicious, and may do everything in their power to get you convicted. If the officer finds you to be aggressive, it’s possible you could be not only charged with a DUI, but also for resisting arrest.

Be Mindful of Movements

When approaching your car door, the police officer is already on the defense: it’s how she has been trained to respond. One sudden movement can make an officer go from 0 to 60. Keep your hands on the wheel, and communicate with the officer about every movement you make. This tip is meant to protect you throughout the interaction. Officer’s are trained to protect their own lives, and if you give them reason to believe they are in danger, they will use as much force on you as they see fit.   

Don’t Respond To Any Potentially Incriminating Questions

The officer will try to gather any information they can on you, from the observations they make about your appearance, your behavior, the scent and condition of your car, and what information you provide through dialogue. Do NOT answer any questions that can be used as evidence to incriminate you of a crime. Officers will play on your anxieties when they pull you over. Provide the officer with your name, your license and registration — do not answer questions about how much you have drank. Instead, explain to the officer that you have been advised not to answer any questions.

Refuse All Field Sobriety Tests

You are not obligated under Florida law to perform field sobriety exercises. These exercises only act as a way for officers to gain more incriminating evidence on you, and the results are in no way based in science; results are entirely subjective — the officer decides whether or not you passed based on her “observations.”

When an officer asks you to submit to a breathalyzer, you must decide if you believe this is something that would benefit you. If you do submit to a breathalyzer, you may be able to prove your innocence. Just remember that this test is another opportunity of the officer to collect incriminating evidence, and breathalyzers are known to be extremely faulty. If the officer takes you to the station, you are obligated by law to submit to a chemical test.

Contact a Fort Lauderdale DUI Attorney

While the officer is observing every detail of your interaction to further document later, you should be making you own mental notes. As soon as you can, reach out to an experienced, supportive Fort Lauderdale DUI defense lawyer. John Castellano is an aggressive DUI defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale, and will build you a strong case by research and collecting all necessary data to support your case. If you find yourself facing DUI charges, contact him today for a free initial consultation by filling out his online contact, or calling Castellano Legal at: 954-766-8810

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About the Author:

John M. Castellano is a Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney who has helped thousands of clients throughout Florida. While building a reputation as a premiere Fort Lauderdale DUI attorney, Mr. Castellano has worked tirelessly to develop strategies to best protect the rights of those arrested for DUI in Broward, Dade and West Palm. However, Mr. Castellano is not just a drunk driving lawyer. He has been a successful domestic violence attorney, drug trafficking attorney, as well as all other Felony and Misdemeanor cases.

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