Questions Police Officers Can Ask Drivers Stopped for DUI
It’s always nerve-racking to have to deal with the police, even when you know that you haven’t done anything wrong. Getting pulled over on DUI suspicions is far from a pleasant experience. You will be asked certain questions and the information that you reveal could potentially be used against you. Being prepared is very important in such instances. It’s a good idea to know the general types of questions police officers can ask during DUI stops in Arizona and the best responses for those.
The Most Common Police DUI Questions
Police officers follow a standard protocol whenever they have DUI suspicions. The driver will get pulled over. Certain questions will be asked. A police officer may also decide to administer field sobriety and breathalyzer tests.
Commonly, questions will be asked about whether the driver has been drinking and where they are coming from. Understand that even if a question seems innocent like the second one, it can still provide the police officer with information or probable cause that can be utilized to make a DUI arrest.
Other typical questions police officers can ask whenever a driver is pulled over on DUI suspicions include:
- Do you know why you got pulled over: again, the aim of this question is to extract information from you. It’s best to refrain from attempting to explain yourself. Let the police officer know that you have no idea.
- Would you mind stepping out of the car to do a field sobriety test: in Arizona, you do not have to provide your consent to field sobriety testing. While refusing a blood alcohol content (BAC) test will have severe consequences, a refusal to do field sobriety tests cannot be used against you in court. Be polite in your response but let the police officer know you will not be doing the test.
- Do you agree to submit to a BAC test: the police officer should also let you know what the consequences of refusing the test are going to be (license suspension, even if you haven’t committed a DUI). This is the test you will have to do on the spot.
- Do you know how fast you were going: in Arizona, a police officer cannot pull you over just because. There must be a reason for the interaction. Speeding, swerving, a broken light and excessively slow driving are all considered suspicious. When you get pulled over, you may be asked about the speed that you’d been driving at. The best thing to do is to reply that you don’t have an idea about the speed the vehicle was going at.
You Have the Right to Remain Silent!
It’s difficult to emphasize the incredible importance of remaining silent during a police stop. You are protected by law against self-incrimination when answering questions police officers can ask. Many drivers become excessively chatty during a police stop because of nervousness. Such behavior can make it more difficult for a DUI attorney to get a positive outcome later on.
Be polite and cooperate with the police officer. Provide your documents and step out of the vehicle if you’re asked to. Refuse to do the field sobriety test but do take the BAC test. Don’t lie in an attempt to get out of the situation. If you have been drinking and you say that you haven’t, the lie could be used against you in court.
It is acceptable to tell a police officer that you will not answer their questions. In Arizona, as well as in other states, you cannot be arrested on DUI suspicions because you refused providing information.
Remember that video cameras could be a part of the standard police car equipment. Thus, statements you make will be recorded and it will be difficult to dispute them later on. Let a police officer know that you have been advised by your attorney to remain silent and follow through with this decision. While cooperating is a good idea, there’s really no need to self-incriminate yourself because of nervousness.