Defending Yourself Against a DUI  

          DUI or driving under the influence is one crime that affects people from all walks of life. In fact, people from different social strata are commonly booked for DUI, and the surprising part is that they way their cases are handled are usually the same all over the country.

          If you are stopped by police for driving under the influence, there are few things that you should be aware of. This will ease many initial problems that many DUI offenders face.

          The first thing that you should be is respectful. Remember, the officer is just doing his or her job. You should make an effort to answer all questions directly. However, you should stop answering questions the moment you feel you are incriminating yourself. The Fifth Amendment of the US Constitution gives you the right to keep quiet if you do not want to incriminate yourself.

          This means that if you are asked whether you have been drinking, you have the right not to answer this question. Even if the officer asks you how much you have been drinking, you can always decline to answer the question. If the officer wants you to step out of your vehicle, you can inquire whether you are under arrest. Remember, you should never get out of the vehicle and do any sobriety tests. Most sobriety tests performed on the road can be failed by even a person who is sober. And if you do fail in the test, it will just point towards your guilt.

          The basic thing to remember is that you do not have to incriminate yourself. No matter what the officer tells you, it is always the prosecutor who decides how a case is to be tackled, including the ones dealing with DUI. Therefore, you should just concentrate on being polite and respectful. Do not cooperate with the officers as it will only make the matters worse.

          If you do not take a breathalyzer test or offer a blood sample or perform the field sobriety test, there is a good chance that you could get the charge for driving under the influence reduced or dismissed if it is your first offense.

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