“I have your back”
On the stretch of I-390 that runs through Livingston County, more than one person has been pulled over for speeding or some other traffic violation only to find him or herself arrested and charged with DWI or Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance. Lately there has been a police officer in Avon who likes to concoct a missing license plate bulb in order to pull people over. Anything to stop your car and see what else he can find.
For a defendant facing allegations of DWI or drug possession, what can you do? For starters, if you are stopped by police, there are a few proactive steps any citizen who wants to protect their civil rights can take:
- Produce your driver's license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance through a small crack in your window.
- Exercise your right to remain silent! Politely decline to answer any questions, including questions about where you came from, where you are going, whether you have consumed any alcohol, or whether you have any drugs in your car.
- Tell the police that you want to speak with a lawyer.
- Politely decline to give police permission to search your car.
- Politely decline to take any "field sobriety tests."
If you are going to get arrested, so be it. Telling the police officer that you "only had 2 or three drinks," or that, "I have a little pot but it belongs to my friend," is NOT going to get you off the hook. As a defense attorney, I would rather see you get arrested after police unlawfully search your car and gather no confession, instead of you admitting to breaking the law and giving consent to a search. In either event, you get arrested, but if you don't talk, we have a much better chance of getting you out of trouble and avoiding a conviction.
If you are facing DWI or controlled substance charges in Wayne, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, or Orleans Counties, contact us at The Militello Law Firm for a free telephone consultation and case evaluation. Our phone number is (585) 485-0025.