What can we learn from Tiger Woods’ recent DUI arrest in Florida other than don’t drive under the influence of any substance? Well, it’s a perfect example of how cooperating with the police only helps build their DWI case against you.
Like Tiger, many people make the mistake of cooperating with police when they are pulled over for driving under the influence of alcohol. In Maryland, you’re not required to perform field sobriety tests. It’s perfectly legal to decline to take the field sobriety tests.
So, why do people opt to take the field sobriety tests? First, the police don’t advise you that the tests are voluntary. Usually, the police convince you that taking the tests are in your best interests by saying, “I just want to make sure you are okay to drive.”
Also, many people interacting with the police during a DUI stop are trusting of police officers and believe what they say. They don’t understand that the police officer is just building their case against you. They’ve been taught to be respectful of police officers, which you should be, but there’s nothing wrong with politely declining to cooperate with their investigation. Say, “Lawyer,” and then remain silent.
You should refuse to take the breathalyzer test, too. However, in Maryland, you will be penalized by the MVA for refusing the breath test. Your license will be suspended for 270 days, or you can opt to enter the interlock program. While refusing to answer questions and the field sobriety tests will not adversely affect your license, refusing the breathalyzer test is a different story. Unless you have had nothing to drink, refuse the breath test. The test only makes the police’s case stronger.
In our opinion, if you show any signs of impairment, like bloodshot, watery eyes or slurred speech, then the police are going to arrest you whether or not you refuse the field sobriety tests. In our office’s view, if you’re going to be arrested anyway, then what’s the point of performing the field sobriety tests and breathalyzer?
In Tiger’s case, he would have been better off refusing to take the field sobriety tests, breathalyzer, and providing the police with information. Typically, a DUI case cannot be proven against you when you are pulled over. But, after you start talking and consenting to field sobriety and breathalyzer tests the police start proving their case.
Columbia, MD DUI Lawyer
When seeking out a Columbia, MD DUI lawyer, consider the Law Offices of Ross W. Albers. Ross W. Albers is an experienced and proven Columbia DUI lawyer who has the ability to get you the best possible outcome for your Maryland DUI case. For more information on The Law Offices of Ross W. Albers, or to schedule a free consultation, give us a call at 443-457-3890 or fill out the form on our website, today!