In all states, including New York, law enforcement officials use different methods to apprehend drivers who could be driving while intoxicated or driving under the influence of drugs. Drivers should note that they can be pulled over if officers see any probable cause or sign of intoxication.
For example, a traffic violation may lead an officer to suspect that the driver inside the vehicle could be drunk or driving while impaired. When a driver gets pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving, it is important to follow some simple steps which could prevent a DUI arrest or other citations.
When a driver is being pulled over by an officer, the driver should find a safe place to pull over, such as the shoulder of the road. Drivers should always keep important documents, such as their insurance card and registration, within reachable areas, as officers will likely ask for these documents.
As officers approach the vehicle, it is important for the driver to switch the dome light on in the car. The driver's hands should remain on the steering wheel so the officers can see them, as putting the hands where the officers cannot see them may be viewed as a threat.
It is important for drivers to be courteous when officers ask questions. Admit nothing. Drivers should note that they are not obliged to give an officer any information except for proof of insurance, vehicle registration and a driver's license.
If an officer proceeds with the investigation and orders the driver to conduct a field sobriety test, the driver may politely decline. In New York, a breath test may be next if the driver refuses a field sobriety test. The test would determine if the driver has alcohol on his or her breath. If the result of the test shows that the driver has 0.08 percent blood alcohol content, the driver can be charged with DUI.
After being charged with a DUI, it's important to contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer who can examine the facts surrounding your case and help you defend your rights.
Source: Motorists.org, "How to protect your rights during a DUI traffic stop," accessed on Aug. 3, 2014