Las Vegas is known worldwide as a popular destination for partying, which may be part of the problem. Over 2,200 people were arrested for DUI in Las Vegas in 2015 alone, according to reports by National Public Radio. The Nevada Highway Patrol reports steady increases in arrests of drivers for driving under the influence. Although it’s obviously best to just not drink and drive, what should you do if you get pulled over for DUI?
Three Things to Do at a DUI Traffic Stop
Every traffic stop is different, so there is no way to perfectly plan such an event. However, there are definitely three things you should do.
- Be Respectful to the Officer
This can be difficult for an intoxicated person, but do whatever you can to be respectful. Understand that the officer is likely working late, out on the road, dealing with dangerous people every day. He or she just wants to keep the roads safe by making sure drunk drivers are not on the road. If you’ve been drinking, chances are the officer will be able to tell, even if you think you can hide it. Use respectful language and comply with requests for your license and insurance.
- Never Resist or Argue
If the officer asks you to step out of the vehicle or turn around, do not resist. Even if you are frustrated, these are lawful requests in most situations, and you do not want to add other charges to the arrest. IF you are intoxicated, the officer will find out. You are probably going to be arrested and placed in custody. There is little you can do to change that, so the next part is very important.
- Remain Silent
If you are drunk and an officer tries to question you, you are not required to give answers to the questions or give a statement. You have the right to remain silent, and this is generally your best option. Remember that any comment you make may be used against you. Be courteous and simply say that you would rather not answer any questions without an attorney present. You should inform the police officer of this as soon as possible after you’ve been stopped. This forces the officer to either make an arrest or let you go. Expect to be detained. The officer will read you your rights, and you will be taken to a police station to be booked and jailed.
To Take a Breathalyzer or Not
There is little benefit to refusing blood or breathalyzer testing, because under Nevada law, an officer can call for a search warrant and, once obtained, then forcibly collect a blood sample from you. This has been upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in the 2013 Missouri v. McNeely decision.
Under Nevada law N.R.S. 484C.160, all licensed drivers have given implied consent to blood and breath testing simply by operating a motor vehicle on the road. If you are suspected of driving under the influence and you refuse a breathalyzer or blood test, your license will be revoked for one year automatically, whether or not you are acquitted of DUI. This is longer than the standard 90-day revocation period for first offense DUI.
Even without hard evidence, a jury can convict you based on an officer’s testimony, dashcam video, and other forms of evidence.
Getting Help with Your Las Vegas DUI
You should not risk a DUI conviction by trying to handle the charges yourself. The prosecutors will seek the maximum sentence regardless of whether it’s your first arrest for DUI. If you’ve been arrested and charged with a DUI in Las Vegas or the surrounding areas, you need experienced attorneys guiding you and standing up for your rights. Adras & Altig, Attorneys at Law, have the experience and skill needed to protect your license, your livelihood, and your freedom. While nothing can guarantee you’ll get a dismissal, you should never represent yourself in a DUI case. Contact us to schedule a free confidential consultation today.