There are few things more stressful than a traffic stop. Even if you haven’t done anything illegal and are confident that the police will let you go, it can still feel like something can and will go horribly wrong. It’s even easier to panic if you were pulled over for a good reason. Many people in these situations will say or do things that make their situations much worse, and the sad fact is that these mistakes are easy to avoid. When you find yourself being pulled over by the police, here are just a few common mistakes you should never make.
Disclosing Too Much Information
If you are pulled over by the police, the only information you need to provide is your license and your insurance information. You do not need to give out any other information, despite what the police officer might tell you. And yet, people often fail to realize this fact. Whether it’s because of nerves or an overly trusting nature, people will say way too much during a traffic stop, and it ultimately gets them into trouble. When in doubt, say nothing; the police can’t use anything you say against you if you just keep quiet.
Reaching For Your License and Registration
The police are trained to watch for sudden moves and people reaching for weapons, and people have gotten shot for going into their pockets to take out their license. For all a police officer knows, you’re reaching for a gun instead of your wallet, so make sure you have your driver’s license and insurance information ready to go when the officer gets to your car. Keep your hands in sight at all times and be as transparent with your actions as possible.
Arguing with a Police Officer
Traffic tickets and arrests can be contested, but the side of the road with an annoyed police officer is not the time to try. The most you can do during a traffic stop is ask for a police officer’s badge if you want to make sure you’re talking to a real officer. Assuming that you are dealing with the real police, go along with whatever happens. If you feel like you were wronged, contact a lawyer and make a complaint later on. Your chances will be much better.
Agreeing to a Field Sobriety Test
It may sound like this is working against you, but you can and should refuse a request for a field sobriety test in New York. Unlike chemical sobriety tests (which are required by law), field sobriety tests aren’t as accurate as many people believe. Not everyone acts like how a drunk person is “supposed” to act during a test, and even someone who is completely sober could fail the test if they are clumsy or nervous. A chemical test will produce more accurate results, while a field test will just give an officer more of an opportunity to suspect you are driving while intoxicated even if you are not.
Above all else, the key to handling a traffic stop is to just stay calm. Things do go wrong during traffic stops, but most people can drive away from them as long as they don’t panic. Cooperate with the police officer even if you don’t agree with what is happening, and remember that you won’t be doing yourself any favors if you let your emotions get the best of you.
If you fall victim to some of the more common mistakes of a traffic stop and feel you have been falsely charged, make sure to get the justice you deserve with help from The Law Office of Mahmoud R. Rabah. With years of courtroom experience to his backing, Mr. Rabah will be your champion both in and out of the courtroom, working relentlessly to ensure that your rights are being protected every step of the way. Don’t leave the fight for your innocence up to chance and contact The Law Office of Mahmoud R. Rabah today for all your New York City legal needs.