A DUI is a serious criminal offense, associated with severe consequences. Not only are you facing jail time, fines, license suspension, a mandatory education program and increased auto insurance premiums, but a permanent mark on your criminal record can ruin your reputation.
If you are pulled over by police officers and detained, you are technically not under arrest. However, you are not allowed to leave the scene. If you are pulled over at night, the officer will be looking for any indication or evidence of intoxication or impairment. So here are five things you should do immediately upon being pulled over or arrested for DUI in Colorado Springs.
1. Be polite
Cooperate with law enforcement and hand over your license, registration and insurance card. Do not answer any questions which can incriminate you. If you are asked, "Have you been drinking?" You may respond by saying "No," if you are certain that your BAC level isn't at 0.08%. However, you are not obligated to answer this question and may reply that you have been advised to not answer that question.
2. Do not agree to perform any field sobriety tests or take the preliminary alcohol screening test
Again, you are not legally obligated to participate in any field sobriety tests, coordination tests, or take the handheld breath device. These tests are designed to help law enforcement gather more evidence of your impairment and can be used against you in court. However, the preliminary breath test is not.
3. Take the breath or blood test
Colorado law requires you to take a breath or blood test if you are arrested for DUI by an officer who has probable cause to believe that you've been driving under the influence. If you refuse, your driver's license will be
suspended for one year without any opportunity to obtain a restricted license. Your refusal could be used as evidence in court.
4. Write everything down
It's extremely important to record every detail of the arrest. DUI cases are often won and lost in the details, making any minor kind of information make a substantial defense in your case.
Write down the following:
- What time and when did the arrest occur?
- The reason the officer provided you upon making the stop
- Was a breath test administered?
- What did the breathalyzer device look like?
- What questions were you asked by law enforcement?
- What other tests were performed?
- How many drinks did you have?
- Who was present during your arrest?
5. Gather witnesses
Having witnesses can help build a solid case, regardless of the truth of the situation. If anyone was with you in the car, with you before the arrest or outside observers, ask them if they would be willing to help.
Most important, contact an experienced Colorado Springs DUI attorney immediately. He/she will be able to guide you through the process of regaining your driving privileges and provide you with a solid defense to fight the charges against you.
For more information, contact our firm to schedule your free case evaluation.