Pulled Over for a DUI in Delaware: What Should I Do?
- Do Not Answer any Questions. Do not tell the police officer where you are coming from and/or how much you had to drink. Politely refuse to answer any questions. If you say that you had “2 beers” or that you are coming from a party or a bar, this gives the police suspicion to conduct a DUI investigation. Under the Delaware and United States Constitutions you are not obligated to respond to police questioning and you shouldn’t. It is in your best interest to stay mute throughout the process if you have had alcohol to drink.
- Provide the Officer Your Driver’s License and Registration. You are only obligated to provide police your credentials including your driver’s license, registration and insurance information. You should have this current information ready for the officer and provide these items.
- Refuse Field Sobriety Testing. In Delaware, it is likely in your best interest to decline field sobriety testing. Field sobriety tests such as the walk and turn and one leg stand, may be used to build a case against you. If you make as little as 2 mistakes known as “clues” on these tests you will be deemed by “under the influence” by the officer. The police officer will then have probable cause to arrest you for suspicion of DUI. You are not obligated to take field sobriety tests in Delaware. Police officers are not allowed to force you take the tests and can only request field sobriety testing. If you refuse everything it makes it easier for your attorney to challenge the case in court.
- Refuse the Breathalyzer. You should refuse any breathalyzer and never blow into a police officer’s intoxilyzer machine. You are not obligated to blow into the machine. Blowing into the breathalyzer will give the police a printout showing your exact blood alcohol concentration further building their case against you. If you refuse the breathalyzer the police may choose to proceed against without a breath result under an “impairment theory” or they may choose to apply for a search warrant to obtain a blood sample. If they proceed under an “impairment theory” it is harder for the prosecution to prove the case at trial.
- Do Not Consent to a Blood Draw. Police may call a phlebotomist and try to obtain a blood sample if they suspect drugs are involved or they are unable to obtain a breath sample in alcohol cases. There are two ways for police to obtain a sample of your blood: consent or applying for a search warrant. Do not consent or sign any forms agreeing to a blood draw. Consent is the easiest way for police to obtain blood. Politely refuse and force police to apply for a search warrant. You may be able to challenge the search warrant in court. Once a search warrant is approved by a Justice of the Peace you must give a sample of your blood. At this point the police have the right to forcibly hold you down and take your blood as long as it does not jeopardize your safety.
Contact Jason R. Antoine, Delaware DUI Attorney at (302) 482-4802 if you are someone you know is charged with a DUI within the State of Delaware. I offer free consultations on all pending DUI charges.