As a citizen of the United States of America, you have certain rights that are clearly stated in the Constitution. If you happen to get pulled over by the police, you must remember to always exercise your given rights. Not only will this enhance your personal safety, but it will also help to protect you in the court of law. Here are five things to remember so you do not forfeit your rights.
Always Keep the Proper Documentation
Not having the necessary paperwork in your vehicle could lead to trouble. Some of the must-have documents include your driver’s license, proof of insurance, and an updated registration card for the vehicle. It is also critical that you do not allow your inspection sticker to expire. If your area allows you to carry a concealed weapon, be certain that your permit remains with you at all times.
Police Officers Are Not Lawyers
Do not ever make the mistake of asking a police officer for legal advice. If the officer gives you a ticket, there is no need to ask the officer about the legal ramifications of the ticket. The best approach is to give very brief and concise answers to any questions. If you've been pulled over and are charged with a DUI the best option is to contact a lawyer, like those at Ronald Dinan & Associates for legal help.
Many motorists begin to instantly panic when a police officer signals them to pull over. However, remaining calm and composed will enable you to handle the situation a lot more effectively. After rolling down your window, keep your hands on the steering wheel. Do not reach for your license or registration card until the officer instructs you to do so as the officer doesn't know what you could be going for. Routine traffic stops can be extremely dangerous for officers so they take them very seriously. Don't give the officer reason to be jumpy after stopping you.
You Do Not Have to Agree to a Search
If a police officer asks for permission to search your vehicle, you have the right to deny his request. However, if given the reason to suspect you of illegal activity the officer can use other methods to detain you before getting a search warrant for your car. As soon as an officer turns on the blue lights, he will be watching your every move so don't make trouble for yourself by acting suspicious “just for fun”.
You Are Not Obligated to Answer Certain Questions
Police officers are trained to probe people for information. If you make the mistake of admitting guilt, your statements can be used against you in the court of law. However, always give the officer a reasonable amount of respect while protecting your own rights.
Forfeiting your rights puts you in a very vulnerable predicament. These tips will certainly help you to retain your constitutional rights. Your freedom and personal safety should always remain at the top of your priority list.