DUI Cases – The Traffic Stop

Scott Moriarity

Most Tacoma DUIs start the same way.  You are pulled over for a simple traffic infraction.  The officer smells alcohol and asks how much you’ve had to drink.  No matter how much you tell him or her you’ve had they ask you to step out of the vehicle for field sobriety tests.  Usually after the field sobriety tests, the officer will ask you to provide a portable breath sample.  Whether you know it or not, the officer is already starting to build a DUI case against you.

This is how you should handle the situation.  First, be polite.  You don’t want to come off like a jerk.  Remember, the officer is the one who will decide whether you get arrested or not.  Second, don’t answer any question.  You have a right to remain silent.  Remain silent.  Give the officer your license, your insurance, your proof of registration and politely let him or her know that you will not answer any questions.  If the officer asks you out of the vehicle, you should get out.  You don’t want the officer to think you are a threat by refusing to get out.  Do not perform any field sobriety tests or agree to a portable breath test.  These are completely voluntary and you cannot be arrested or have your license suspended for refusing to perform them.  The breath test at the police station is the one that will cause your license to be suspended if you refuse.

By following these simple instructions, you are giving your attorney the ammunition they needs to win your case.  If you are facing a charge of DUI in Tacoma or anywhere else in Washington you need an aggressive and experience attorney to help you.  Contact our office for a free initial consultation with an attorney.