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Even a routine traffic stop can be an intimidating experience. Perhaps you were travelling a little above the speed limit or had a burnt-out headlight. You could be feeling a bit stressed out over your current situation, but what happens if you suddenly find yourself accused of drunk driving?

When facing accusations of intoxication, remaining calm throughout the procedure is crucial. However, with the severity of the consequences for a DWI conviction, this could be challenging at best, potentially leaving you to wonder if your actions will only make matters worse.

Understanding your rights

Even if you haven't consumed any alcohol prior to the traffic stop, nervous behavior could cause an increase in suspicion of wrong-doing. While it is understandable to be uncomfortable during this period, you probably don't want to face unwarranted criminal charges, and gaining an understanding of your rights and how to protect them could help you deal with such a scenario. Some key factors to consider include the following:

  • Readiness:  Having your license and registration at the ready during a traffic stop is a solid move, as any form of hesitation or panic could give an officer additional time or reason to further investigate suspicions.
  • Necessity:  During a traffic stop, providing only what is necessary is likely in your best interests. Oversharing information or attempting to explain the situation is unnecessary and could prove more harmful than helpful.
  • Demeanor:  Your behavior during this process may also be crucial. Remaining calm and politely answering any necessary questions could prove much more beneficial than attempting to prove innocence through confrontation.
  • Compliance:  The officer may ask you to step out of the vehicle and perform field sobriety or breath tests, and while you have the right to refuse these tests, doing so could be detrimental.

It is also important to note that a variety of factors can influence the results of these tests, and should you find yourself accused of drunk driving, despite your innocence, you may wish to challenge the charges and protect yourself from suffering undesirable consequences. However, the process can be complex.

Obtaining guidance

With the potential weight of a conviction for driving while intoxicated looming overhead, you could be feeling somewhat overwhelmed and intimidated by the process. However, you don't necessarily have to go through it alone, and seeking guidance from someone with extensive knowledge of North Carolina state DWI laws in the initial stages of the process could prove exceedingly beneficial. By obtaining advice on making informed decisions throughout this period, you could become better prepared to seek the most favorable outcome possible during legal proceedings.

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Hale Law Firm, PC
16 W. Martin Street
Suite 101
Raleigh, NC 27601

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Phone: 919-805-3364
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