You face a dilemma. On the one hand, you are afraid to answer the police officer’s questions for fear that anything that you say will be misconstrued and used against you. On the other hand, you don’t want to be rude to a law enforcement official and risk making that official angry.
You’ve likely watched enough TV shows and movies to know that you are in a tough spot, but there are things that you can do to protect your rights.
How to Answer a Police Officer Who Stops You for Drunk Driving
If the police officer asks if you have been drinking and you answer the question, then you may be incriminating yourself. In doing so you may be giving up your constitutional rights. The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution provides that no one “…shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself…” This means that you do not have to offer the police evidence that you committed a crime.
You may be informed of your “right to remain silent” during an arrest. However, in many circumstances, the police officer will not arrest you immediately and may instead pull you over and ask you questions before an arrest. In this type of situation, it is up to you to respectfully choose to remain silent.
At all times, you should remain polite and non-confrontational while speaking with the police. However, you should not answer any questions that may provide evidence that may be used against you. While you technically cannot “plead the fifth” until you have been arrested for drunk driving, you can still nicely refuse to answer questions and instead say that your attorney will be available to answer all of the officer’s questions.
Protect All Rights During and After a DUI Stop
It can be intimidating and scary to be pulled over for drunk driving in Virginia. If this has happened to you, then it is important to contact an experienced DUI defense lawyer as soon as possible so that you can be sure that all of your rights are protected.
Before you speak to anyone about your case, please download our FREE DUI DWI Arrest Survival Guide and contact us directly to schedule an initial consultation with an experienced drunk driving defense attorney.