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Know what points to evaluate in a drunk driving stop

Facing drunk driving charges is a sure way to crash the fun at the end of a good night. For this reason, you should take the time to plan your transportation home before you take that first sip of alcohol. If you forget or you aren't able to properly plan, you are putting yourself at risk of facing these very serious criminal charges.

One of the points that comes up when you are facing drunk driving charges is why you were pulled over. The police officer who stops you has to have a reasonable suspicion for stopping your vehicle. This means that the officer can't just stop you because he or she felt like it. Instead, there has to be a reason.

Some cases involve firm reasons for stopping a vehicle. One example of this would be if you didn't stop at a stop sign. This would be a lawful stop.

Other cases aren't this clear. If you were weaving, stopping suddenly or exhibiting any other signs of impaired driving, the police officer could stop you based on those observations.

Even if the traffic stop is made based on obvious reasonable suspicion, there is another element that comes into the picture. The police officer must have probable cause to make an arrest for DUI. This would include you not being able to pass a field sobriety test or having a high blood alcohol concentration.

As you can see, each step in the process of pulling over, evaluating and arresting a suspected drunk driver can come into the picture when planning a defense. Knowing what points to look into can help you to make a plan that addresses the applicable points in your case.

Source: FindLaw, "What is Reasonable Suspicion for a DUI Stop?," accessed Jan. 13, 2017

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Ronald E. Smith, P.C.

criminal defense & Social security disability law

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