Everyday in the state of Texas, and the Houston area, people are stopped for suspicion of DWI, or for other reasons including routine traffic stops in which unsuspecting motorists are “lit up” and pulled over. In the event that you are ever pulled over by a law enforcement agency in Houston, or elsewhere in Texas, The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates’ Houston DWI Lawyer Tad A. Nelson recommends following the well thought-out advice in the list below. In the list below you will find a number of tips and strategies to employ when it comes to dealing with police during DWI or other traffic stops.
Tips For Handling Encounters With Police in Houston, TX
- Regardless of how you are feeling, your experience on the day in question, or whether or not you “feel” you are guilty, do not use profane language with the officers or insult them in any way. This can result in verbal assault charges or an extremely unfavorable experience dealing with police for the time being. Always remain respectful. Also, stay away from insulting the government or their tactics as well. None of that will help your situation.
- Do not act in a manner which may be perceived as “threatening” by officers. This can include making gun gestures with your hands and throwing up gangs signs at the officer. Safety is always most important for the officers as these men generally have families and have experienced the murder of other officers. If the police officer feels threatened then you may be in for one hell of a time. It also helps to keep sudden movement and body motions to a minimum as well.
- Don’t yell at officers, raise your voice at them, and make sure to keep your voice at a “normal” level. If you are talking fast, police may believe you are high on drugs or have psychological issues.
- Remember that anything you say is likely being recorded by officers. Anything you say may be made available to jurors. If jurors hear you being disrespectful, belligerent, or indecent, it may hurt your case and result in a nasty outcome if your case goes to trial. Be nice.
- Be cordial and respectful to the officers and use salutations and phrases like sir and ma’am. This can go a long to way preventing an arrest if you are guilty, and by showing you are an upstanding citizen even if you agree with the officer. This will help in any recordings of the arrest heard by jurors as well.
- If it makes sense, exercise your Constitutional 5th Amendment Right to remain silent. Don’t volunteer any information to the officer in any way. Also, keep your opinions to yourself if you decide to take this route. Don’t give the officer any additional information to add to their records of the arrest. If you decide to go the 5th Amendment route then ride that wave all the way through the process by keeping your mouth closed until you consult with your Houston attorney.
- Follow any orders given to you by the law enforcement officer. This is the law. By not following the orders given to you be the police you may be making yourself susceptible to additional criminal charges. This will not help the situation, or your case in the event that you plan to fight it out in a full blown court trial.
- Do not try to influence the officer’s decision to arrest you in any way. This action may get you arrested. This also goes a long way to help you deal with instances of being accused of bribery as well. Try to stay out of that area of discussion if possible.
- Remember, officer safety if always important so keep your hands where the officer tells you to, and you could be preventing the harsh wrath of scarey cops. Remember, your safety from the police is on the line during traffic stops or DWI stops as well.