What Are Your Rights as a DUI Suspect?

What Are Your Rights as a DUI Suspect?

March 9, 2020

When you’re suspected of a crime, you still have certain rights that are designed to protect you from being unfairly accused and convicted. DUI cases are no different—police and lawyers still have to follow procedural rules to preserve evidence, protect your rights and reach a fair and just outcome.

Of course, if you’ve been pulled over under suspicion of a DUI, you’re probably scared and nervous—you might not be thinking about what rights you have as a DUI suspect in Lubbock, TX. That’s why it’s important to know what they are ahead of time, and to hire an attorney if you are arrested.

When can police pull you over or arrest you?

Generally, police must have probable cause that a crime has occurred, is in progress or will occur before they can arrest a suspect. That’s pretty simple to establish if they notice you weaving all over the road or drinking a beer while driving—most people would assume the driver was under the influence.

However, police are also allowed to pull you over for traffic violations or DUI checkpoints, at which point they may notice evidence of your being under the influence—smelling alcohol, noticing signs of intoxication and other clues can lead them to the conclusion that you may be driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. At that point, they would have probable cause to arrest you on suspicion of DUI.

Police officers can ask you to take a urine, blood or breath test to establish your blood alcohol content; while you can refuse, it violates the “implied consent” rules that most states have in place. These laws state that operating a motor vehicle implies consent to submitting to tests when you’re suspected of DUI.

What can you do to protect your rights?

Whether or not you have been drinking, it’s important that you do your best to comply with police requests and orders while preserving your DUI rights in Lubbock, TX as much as possible. For example, don’t argue with the officers—this will only frustrate them, and your words could be used against you.

You have the right to refuse taking field sobriety tests (such as reciting the alphabet backwards), which are notoriously ineffective in determining sobriety—however, officers may threaten you. In that case, clearly let them know that you will comply but you don’t consent.

Blood alcohol and other chemical tests are also not required, but refusal can be used against you. Ultimately, the best thing you can do to preserve your rights is to call an attorney before you submit to any chemical test, and follow their instructions.

Protect your DUI rights in Lubbock, TX

If you’ve been accused of a DUI, hiring an attorney is crucial to getting a favorable outcome. The Law Office of Rob Biggers specializes in criminal and family law cases, including DUI. We practice West Texas values in the courtroom—let us fight for your DUI rights when you call us to set up a consultation today.

**This Blog/Website is made available by the lawyer or law firm publisher for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information and a general understanding of the law, not to provide specific legal advice. By using this blog/website you understand that there is no attorney-client relationship between you and the Blog/Website publisher. The Blog/Website should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your state.**

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