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What You Need to Know About Handling a Police Stop

Jeff Cole
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Partner at Zimmer, Duncan & Cole

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If you are stopped by the police, you can take steps to handle it properly and possibly avoid a routine stop escalating into an arrest. This could also help you if you need to challenge a traffic ticket, DUI arrest, or an arrest for other crimes.

What to Do When the Police Pull You Over

You may be nervous if you see a police car’s flashing red lights in your rearview mirror. That’s normal. Keep in mind that the more you do to remain calm and ensure the police officer’s safety, the more you protect your own safety and avoid unnecessary criminal charges. You should take the following steps:

  • Pull over. Pull over to the right side of the road quickly and safely. Use your turn signal when changing lanes to signal to the officer that you are pulling over.
  • Roll down your window. Roll down your window all the way and put your hands on the steering wheel. If it is dark outside, turn on your inside light. Make any movements slowly. Do not reach for your wallet or your vehicle registration until the police officer requests them as he may think you are pulling out a gun.
  • Let the officer speak first. Wait for the police officer to talk before speaking so as not to make the mistake of saying the wrong thing. Be brief when answering his questions.
  • Follow any orders. You should follow any orders of the police officer—including getting out of your vehicle if he requests you do so. This is so the police officer will not see you as rebellious or resistant.
  • Do not argue. Refrain from arguing with the officer, even if you think he did something wrong. Do not dispute the ticket if he gives you one. You should save these arguments for court.

If you were stopped by the police and received a ticket or were arrested, you need to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you build your defense. Start an online chat today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with our experienced criminal defense attorneys.

Category: Criminal Defense


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