Posts tagged driving under the influence of drugs

The Signs an Officer is Looking for when they pull someone over for a Possible DUI

When a law enforcement officer pulls a person over for a possible DUI (driving under the influence) they will be watching that person closely. Specifically, the officer will be observing that person’s behavior and physical actions to determine if that person is under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

Here are some common signs a trained officer will look for when they first pull someone over for a possible DUI.

  • Difficulty rolling down the window or difficulty exiting the vehicle
  • A red colored or flushed face
  • Bloodshot, watery, red, or glossy eyes
  • Clothing soiled or out of sorts
  • An odor of alcohol comes from the car or from the person’s breath
  • Slurred speech
  • Has a difficult time finding a driver’s license or proof of insurance
  • Attempts to hide something in car while an officer approaches
  • Cannot answer questions in a timely manner
  • Has an inappropriate response to questions
  • Lack of knowledge of time or current whereabouts
  • Does not or cannot follow directions
  • Uses their vehicle for support while standing
  • Sways back and forth while standing
  • Cannot walk straight or keep balance when walking
  • Angry, aggressive or inappropriate attitude

possible DUI

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Typically, if a law enforcement officer observes some of these signs, they will continue to investigate that individual for DUI by asking them to take the DUI field sobriety tests. The field sobriety tests are voluntary tests, and the attorneys at David O Defense always advise NOT to take the field tests. The test are difficult and if a person decides to try the tests, they will fail. Even a sober athletic person would have some difficulty passing the tests.

An officer will also ask the individual to blow into a portable breath test to get a reading on their blood alcohol concentration (BAC). This is also a voluntary test. The DUI defense attorneys at David O Defense always advise NOT to take this test as well.

When under investigation for a possible DUI, a person should politely tell the officer that they want to contact their DUI attorney immediately. An experienced DUI attorney will be able to provide guidance through the situation.

If you don’t have a DUI attorney’s phone number programed in your phone, make sure you put David O Defense in your contacts, 206-459-6392. The attorneys at David O Defense are experienced DUI lawyers and are available if you ever need help!

How Cops Spot a DUI

Police Officer writing a ticket for DUILaw enforcement officers are trained to look for certain driving patterns that may indicate a driver is under the influence of alcohol and or drugs.  According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration the three most common ways cops spot a DUI are; 1) wide turns, 2) straddling along the central marker between lanes, and 3) appearing to be drunk.

Officers must have a “reasonable cause” or a “reasonable suspicion” that a driver is violating the law in some manner to pull the driver over.  Reasonable cause and reasonable suspicion have no precise definition but it must be something supported by a collection of facts, for example an officer could see a car swerving and that minor moving violation would be enough for a stop.

An officer cannot pull someone over because they may have a hunch that person is DUI, they also cannot randomly pull drivers over in hopes they will find an individual that is DUI.

How Cops Spot a DUI

Here is the complete list of impaired driving signs cops are looking for when searching for DUIs.  The list, provided by the NHTSA, is in order from most common way a cop spots a DUI to least likely way.

  • Negotiating a wide turn
  • Straddling along the central marker between the lanes
  • Appearing to be drunk
  • Near misses or hitting either another vehicle or an object
  • Weaving between lanes
  • Driving off of designated highway
  • Swerving within the lane lines
  • Speeding over 10 mph above the designated speed limit
  • Questionable stops in traffic lanes
  • Tailgating
  • Drifting
  • Driving over center marker between lanes
  • Excessive braking
  • Driving against traffic
  • Questionable signaling
  • Delayed reaction to traffic signals
  • Inappropriate stopping or slowing
  • Illegal or unwarranted turns
  • Accelerating or slowing down quickly
  • Driving without headlights on

Interestingly enough, excessive speeding is not a sign of DUI.  Speeding requires quick reflexes and strong judgment, traits that are usually typical of a sober individual.  However if an individual is speeding and they also happen to be DUI, an officer would be able to investigate that individual for DUI even though they did not initially pull them over for DUI.

If you have any questions or comments regarding the above subject matter you can contact David at david@davidodefense.com.

 

The Washington State Patrol releases “Drive High, Get a DUI” Campaign

Last month, the Washington State Patrol began their new campaign, “Drive High, Get a DUI,” to educate the public that it is illegal to drive under the influence of marijuana.  The slogan, “Drive High, Get A DUI” was written to be straight forward and clear, warning drivers that if they are under the influence of marijuana while driving than they could be arrested and charged with DUI.  The campaign officially began on July 1st to coincide with the first day marijuana retail stores opened their doors to the general public.

While marijuana seems to be the primary focus of the campaign, “Drive High, Get A DUI” also applies to other drugs and substances that produce a high effect.  “We see a lot of folks that are impaired by glue, by paint, by prescription and non prescription medication,” said Washington State Trooper, Jeff Sevigney.  Any driver that is under the influence of alcohol, marijuana, drugs, and/or substances could be arrested and charged with DUI.  “The bottom line is don’t drive while you’re impaired,” warns Trooper Sevigney.

In effort to enforce the campaign, Washington State law enforcement agencies have increased their officer training programs to help them better identify individuals that are under the influence of marijuana, drugs, and/or substances.  The sheer number of troopers and patrol units on the streets has also been increased and will be maintained throughout the summer.

“Procedures are still the same.  Troopers are looking for drivers that are under the influence,” explains Trooper Sevigney. “We recommend that you don’t carry it in your vehicle because if I smell marijuana in your vehicle I’m going to instantly make sure nobody is impaired while they’re driving,” said Sevigney.

If charged with a marijuana, drug, or substance DUI, the consequences are the same as an alcohol related DUI, which include possible jail time, monetary fines and fees, and loss of driver’s license.

Contact the experienced DUI lawyers at David O Defense if you have been charged with a DUI, 206-459-6392, the legal consultation is free.

 

Written by Sarah Ann

Seattle Space Needle, Seattle Sculpture Park

David O Defense
2211 Elliott Avenue, Suite 200 Seattle, WA 98121
Tel: 206.459.6392
Fax: 888.615.0237
Email: david@davidodefense.com

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