It’s Your Right, Exercise it.
Let’s get something straight right now. I do not ever advocate for anyone to drink alcohol and drive at any time. Some say that it’s okay to drink and then drive as long as you stopped drinking at least 3 hours before driving. This is just bad advice which I have unfortunately read on other lawyer’s websites. Many a citizen has been prosecuted and convicted for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol when they had stopped drinking 4-6 hours before they were pulled over by the police for DUI in Los Angeles and throughout California. So, let me say it again, if you have been drinking alcohol do not get behind the steering wheel of any car and drive at any time. Taxi’s and Uber or Lyft or other ride sharing programs are available to you to save your life or the life of others from a DUI accident that you may cause.
If you take anything from this Blog and website, please memorize the following and use it when you have just been pulled over and you have been drinking alcohol. The following is FREE LEGAL ADVICE THAT MAY JUST SAVE YOU FROM A DUI CONVICTION.
If you have been drinking alcohol and you are getting pulled over by the police, you will be arrested for DUI no matter what. Understand and believe that you will be arrested for DUI and no amount of schmoozing or fancy talking will get you out of it. The police are trained to look, hear and smell for “objective symptoms” of alcohol intoxication so don’t think you will be on your merry way home when you have been drinking and driving because that won’t happen.
The first thing the police officer will do is to ask you to roll down your car window so he or she can get a good whiff of what’s coming from your person or vehicle. All a cop has to do is smell alcohol emitting from within the vehicle and he or she can legally order you out of the vehicle and onto the sidewalk to begin a DUI investigation. It’s that simple. So here is where you and your friends will have the advantage because you were lucky enough to land on this page of the world wide web.
(1) Since the officer will arrest you anyway, DO NOT VOLUNTEER ANY INFORMATION THAT THE OFFICER AND PROSECUTOR NEED TO CONVICT YOU! I will say it again without yelling. Do not volunteer and information that the officer and prosecutor need to convict you. When the officer approaches your vehicle, exercise your right to remain silent. Say absolutely nothing. I realize this is very difficult because by human nature we want to explain why we were driving a little to fast, or why we swerved accidentally into the adjoining lane, etc.. We want the officer to know that what he or she witnessed back there on the road, which was the reason for getting pulled over in the first place, was due to some innocent non intoxicating reason. SAY NOTHING. If you say absolutely nothing then the officer cannot write in his police report that your speech was slow and slurred which appears in about 99% of DUI arrest reports. Furthermore, the officer cannot write in his arrest report that the odor of alcohol was present on your breath.Again, say nothing at this time. Simply hand the officer your driver’s license, proof of insurance and vehicle registration. All these documents should be easily accessible in your glove compartment but a better place to store these documents is right above your seat wedged under the sun visor above your head. Have all the documents rubber banded together or use one of those medium or large binder clips to keep them all together. That way when you hand the three documents to the California Highway Patrol officer or other law enforcement agency officer he or she cannot state in their police report that the driver “fumbled for his documents” when asked to retrieve them. (Unless an officer makes a false and misleading statement in his or her report but that never happens right.) While you are still seated in your car the police officer will ask you questions such as “Where you were coming from?”, “How much had you drank tonight?”, “Do you know why I stopped you?”, etc... SAY NOTHING. Provide your driver’s license, proof of insurance and registration when asked and above all be very polite. Be very professional even if the cop isn’t. Be the bigger and better person because the chances are that the officer who is detaining you will be hard on you when you exercise your right to remain silent. You want the cop to write in the police report that you were cooperative.
So, up until this time you have been inside the car remaining silent. You have been very courteous and professional. The police officer will not like that you have been exercising your Constitutionally fought for and given right to remain silent. He or she will next order you out of the car. Up until this time, you are already ahead of the DUI game.
The officer will observe the way you exit the vehicle. He or she will note in their arrest report if you had trouble exiting the vehicle, if you took an extra amount of time getting out of the vehicle, if you used the door or fender of the car to brace yourself as you exited, etc.. Providing you were able to exit your vehicle and walk to the sidewalk or other directed area by the police officer without any trouble, the officer will next ask you a series of pre-printed questions before he demands you to perform field sobriety tests. These pre field sobriety test questions are designed for one thing only - to convict you of a Driving Under the Influence Charge in California. Refuse to take them. Do NOT under any circumstances submit to thsi roadside gymnastic tests which are absolutely 100% guaranteed for failure. This is the first and ONLY TIME YOU SAY ANYTHING. So memorize the following and tell it to the law enforcement officer standing in front of you who only wants you to suffer a Driving Under the Influence conviction.
“I will not take any tests and will continue to remain silent, if you arrest me I demand a Blood Test.”
That is it. You have just did what I wish every potential new client who walks into my office did when they were detained pending a DUI conviction. You have just told the officer that you will not take any field sobriety tests. You have just told the officer that if he or she arrests you, that you will only submit to a blood test. Never take any breath test especially the handheld breath test which is usually just another field sobriety test. “Never blow, Always bleed,” is the mantra spoken here at the Law Offices of Jeff Voll. It is legal in the State of California to decline any and all Field Sobriety Tests UNLESS you are on probation for an offense that requires you to submit to any field sobriety test upon command from law enforcement personnel. For the average first DUI detainee this means that you have the right to decline any and all field sobriety tests which were only designed for failure and to help convict you of a DUI.
I am National Highway and Transit Safety Administration and International Chief’s of Police Qualified in the Administration, Detection and Proper Procedures of the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests. I have been qualified as a NHTSA and IACP Instructor and have taught 3 day courses in the administration, detection and proper protocol in administering the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests to Judges, ex-prosecutors and hundreds of defense lawyers over the past 15 years. You can decline field sobriety tests here in California if you are not on probation for an offense that requires you to submit to them. It is not required by law.
So, you have just told the police officer absolutely nothing when you have been ordered out of the car. And when he or she starts asking you questions like “How much have you had to drink?” “What did you have to drink?” “Do you know what time it is now?” “Are you under the care of a doctor?” “What did you last eat?” “When did you last sleep?” “Do you know where you are at right now?” That is when you say the magic words - “I will not take any tests and will continue to remain silent, if you arrest me I demand a Blood Test.” You literally go mute. You say absolutely nothing the rest of time you are being detained and arrested. Remember what I first said above, the officer will smell alcohol on you the second he or she approaches your vehicle and arrest you anyway so do not volunteer any additional information out of your own mouth that will help seal your conviction in court. Do not tell the officer that you were drinking and most importantly, never tell an officer the amount of drinks you had and the times of drinking. The prosecutor needs this crucial information to convict you. Keep your mouth shut and don’t say anything that will certainly get you convicted for a California DUI.
Now the reason why I say to demand a Blood test is because a Blood sample must be kept by law enforcement for one year. During this time I can have the Judge who is presiding over your Los Angeles DUI order that my independent lab analyze your blood sample. The police and prosecutor only test for the amount of alcohol in one’s blood. My team of defense experts makes a three part inquiry by testing your blood sample for alcohol level, amount of sodium fluoride as preservative that is in the vial and they test for any bacteria that may be present in the sample. The prosecutor can easily test for these two additional things but they only rely on and test for alcohol level. Many times my experts have found an inadequate amount of preservative in the vial which translates into the great possibility of a contaminated sample. This has further been verified by my laboratory experts by discovering the presence of bacteria in the blood sample which almost certainly guarantees a not guilty verdict upon presentation of a proper defense to a jury.
Therefore, in a nutshell, remember to remain silent and when the officer orders you out of the car and asks you the pre-field sobriety test questions state the magic words “I will not take any tests and will continue to remain silent, if you arrest me I demand a Blood Test.” Be courteous and professional and never argue with a cop. Stay cool and come see me at The Law Offices of Jeff Voll or call me at At Los Angeles DUI Lawyer. The Law Offices of Jeff Voll understands the confusion and fear that surrounds facing a possible DUI conviction. We also understand that many innocent people are charged with this crime in California every year. We have the experience to achieve the best possible outcome for your case. For a free consultation, contact us 24/7 at 424-281-3020.