You’ve talked your way out of a speeding ticket, parking ticket, or other minor traffic violation before. You may anticipate that you can do the same if an officer stops you for allegedly driving under the influence (DUI). However, talking to the arresting officer may not be your best defense strategy during a DUI stop.
Saying These Things Won’t Help
You really believe your driving was not impaired by alcohol. You would never drive drunk and you want the officer to know this. You may think you can talk your way out of an arrest, but you will probably do more harm than good. The following statements will not help you:
- I only had one drink. I am not drunk. You are admitting that you have, indeed, been drinking and you can’t really know if your blood alcohol content is within the legal limit. Depending on your size and when you had the drink, one drink could put you over the limit. This admission is all the officer needs to conduct a field sobriety test.
- It was a special occasion. I don’t usually do this. While you might get out of a moving violation charge if it is your first offense, it doesn’t work that way with drunk driving.
- I wasn’t planning to drive, but my designated driver left and I had no choice. Motivation or intent doesn’t matter in a drunk driving charge. There are no excuses, so don’t try to make one.
While you may be sympathetic if a friend gives you one of these excuses after driving under the influence you should not expect similar sympathy from a Virginia police officer.
Remember, Everything You Say Can Be Used Against You
If you find yourself pulled over for driving under the influence and you have in fact been drinking, it is important not to say anything other than, “I am choosing to remain silent. I would like to speak to my lawyer.”
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