Rights During A Fredericksburg DUI Stop
Simply providing demographic information, such as license and registration, is all a person has to do if pulled over for suspicion of DUI. While one does have to exit the vehicle if requested to do so, they do not have to perform a field sobriety tests. If you have been pulled over, it is strongly recommended you contact a Fredericksburg DUI lawyer as soon as possible.
It is important to know that the officer is not constitutionally required to provide access to an attorney at the time of the stop. However, if the driver invokes their right to counsel, the officer should refrain from further interrogation. There are certain rights you have during a Fredericksburg DUI stop that are important to remember, and following your DUI stop, you should contact your attorney as soon as possible.
Important Information to Know
During the course of a DUI stop, a person may ask to speak to a lawyer at any time. However, a person is not constitutionally required to be provided a lawyer nor does a person have an automatic right to an attorney during a traffic stop.
Therefore, it is important for someone who has been stopped for suspicion of DUI to know that he or she is not required to answer any questions beyond typical demographic questions when speaking to an officer.
Likewise, a person does not have to perform any field sobriety test, take a preliminary breath test (PBT), or answer any questions that may be incriminating. In fact, it is advisable that the driver specifically not do so.
Biggest Mistakes to Avoid
The biggest mistake to avoid is drinking and driving. If a person has had too much to drink, they would be wise to exercise their ability to use alternative methods of transportation. In doing so, they can avoid putting themselves in a precarious situation. If, however, a person is in that situation of being stopped for suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI), they should know that they do not have to answer any of the officer’s questions that may be incriminating.
This right extends to other requests that the officer may make. For example, a driver is fully within their rights to decline to answer probing questions which may incriminate them, as well as to refuse to perform a field sobriety test. Taking the field sobriety tests and the preliminary breath test when not required are the two most common mistakes that individuals make when stopped on suspicion of a DUI.
DUI drivers often say that they were not read their Miranda rights. In actuality, it is uncommon for someone to be read their Miranda rights during the course of a traffic stop.
These rights, which refer to a landmark Supreme Court case of Miranda vs. Arizona, generally do not have to be read to individuals during the course of a traffic stop. In fact, Miranda rights are not to be read until a person is in custody or the equivalent of a custodial detention.
What this means for DUI stops is that, while a person is being asked questions about where they are coming from or going to, how much they have had to drink, or other questions that may be used later to incriminate a person, they are not required to be read the Miranda rights.
This is why it is important to know that a person has the right to refuse to answer, and should feel free to exercise that right in the interest of not providing the state with potentially incriminating information for their case.
How an Attorney Can Help
DUI charges can have long lasting implications if they lead to a conviction. A Fredericksburg DUI lawyer will work to prevent that conviction from happening by guiding and advising you as to the best course of action at each stage of your case and by keeping you aware of your rights during a Fredericksburg DUI stop and afterwards.