Like many of you, I enjoy celebrating with good friends, food, and drinks on New Year’s Eve. Because I will drInk alcohol, I will certainly take a taxi or Uber home, I hope you will do the same. Driving drunk is very risky from a safety standpoint, and a DWI arrest can cost you thousands of dollars, time in jail and/or your driver’s license. Please do not drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

But if you do and get caught call Robertson, Oswalt and Associates, I stand ready to protect your finances, freedom, and driving privileges. 

While you should always get an experienced attorney if you get charged with a crime, there are a few things you can do to help protect yourself before, during and after an arrest for a DWI.

First, make sure that you obey all traffic laws and that your car is in good working condition with up to date registration. A police officer must have a reason to stop you in the first place, don’t give him or her that reason by speeding, swerving, having a light out, or having an expired license plate. Take care of repairs and registration issues before you get into the car.

Second, do not make a statement if you have been drinking and get pulled over. I have seen many cases where Defendants have done irreparable harm to their cases by opening their mouth. You do not know what impact that a seemingly-innocent statement can have on your case, you do not know what information they may be looking for. You have a constitutional right under the Fifth Amendment to remain silent, so exercise it.

Third, you may consider refusing the breath and/or field sobriety tests, if the officer has not secured a warrant to draw blood. But take note that while refusing the BAC and other tests may reduce your risk of conviction for a DWI, it will likely result in you being charged with “refusal to submit,” a charge the carries a fine and driver’s license suspension. Additionally, it is possible for you to be convicted of a DWI even without filed sobriety and or chemical evidence.

Again, do not drink and drive, but if you do, make sure you have an experienced advocate on your side if you are arrested.