Police officers can’t pull over vehicles just because they feel like it. Instead, they either have to have a specific pattern for stopping them, such as during a sobriety checkpoint, or they have to have reasonable suspicion. The legal standard for reasonable suspicion isn’t very difficult to meet.
In order to meet the criteria for this, the officer only has to see something that makes them believe that there is a crime being committed. Spotting certain signs of impaired driving would meet the standard for the officer to initiate a traffic stop.
Some of the more common signs of drunk driving they look for include:
- Stopping without reason
- Failing to use headlights in the rain, fog or in the hours from dusk to dawn
- Swerving between lanes
- Straddling the centerline
- Failing to obey traffic signals and signs
- Nearly hitting roadside objects
- Driving on the wrong side of the road
- Traveling must faster or slower than what’s appropriate for the conditions
Once the officer has your vehicle pulled over, they will attempt to determine whether you’re impaired or not. This is usually done through asking you questions or having you take a field sobriety test. If there is probable cause to suggest that you’re drunk, you’ll be arrested and given a chemical blood test.
A drunk driving arrest must be addressed quickly. Not only do you have to worry about the criminal matter, there are other facets of these charges that can impact your life. One of these is the possibility of having your driver’s license suspended. Getting started on a defense strategy right away is necessary in these cases.