An officer can pull you over if he or she has a “reasonable” basis to suspect you of driving while under the influence. This could mean doing as little as swerving over the yellow line momentarily. If they have the smallest inkling that you’re impaired or intoxicated, you can pretty much cue the flashing lights and sirens. Nobody ever enjoys being pulled over, but when there’s a potential DUI or DWI hanging over your head, it suddenly becomes much worse. Knowing your rights and what to expect during a DUI stop could help you minimize legal exposure to a problem down the line.
Because of the implied consent law in the state of Maryland, if you refuse to take a Breathalyzer or “fail” roadside acrobatics (field sobriety tests) requested by a police officer, you can have your license suspended and be carted off to jail without further question. Sometimes just taking the test may appear to be easier to avoid other issues, such as if an officer threatens to lock you up, but it is your right to tell an officer that you’d prefer not to take the test. By declining to take the officer’s field sobriety tests, you actually deny the government the ability to use this evidence against you. That is why declining to perform field exercises is always a good idea.
It is never a good idea to plead guilty to any crime, including DUI, without a DUI lawyer’s advice. Limit talking to a police officer altogether if you’re pulled over on suspicion of a DUI/DWI. Your best bet is to assert your right to remain silent and discuss your options with an attorney before you do anything else. An aggressive, seasoned DUI attorney will know how to advise you about your case and what your best move will be in court.
If you blow a .08 or above, you are considered DUI Per Se (DUI automatically by statute because of the BAC number). The officer will likely take your license on the spot and arrest you. You can possibly get away with a .05 or below, but once you hit .07 or more, you should place that call to your lawyer. Everyone’s tolerance for alcohol is different; a .08 looks different on different folks. For a first offense DUI charge, you can lose your license immediately and can receive a fine up to $1,000. A DWI yields 8 points on your license and a DUI results in 12 points.
If you get pulled over for a DUI or DWI, one of your first steps should be to call a competent, experienced Maryland DUI lawyer. Making that your one call can make all of the difference between very substantial penalties, points, jail, insurance increases and possible employment issues. To schedule your free consultation with Robinson & Associates, call (443)-524-7395 or click today.