What should I do if I am stopped on the road for possibly driving under the influence of alcohol?
First, be polite and courteous to the police officer. If the police officer believes you have been drinking, he or she will likely ask you to perform “road side tests” (e.g. walking toe to heel). If you are absolutely sure that you are not under the influence of alcohol, you may choose to perform the tests because successfully performing the tests could result in the officer allowing you to leave. On the other hand, if you have doubt about your ability to preform the tests successfully, tell the officer firmly, but politely , that you will not perform the tests without being allowed to consult with an attorney. While you do not have a right to consult with an attorney at this point, you cannot be forced to perform the roadside tests. If you are charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, the officer will testify as to how you preformed on these roadside tests and it is also possible that your performance will have been recorded on videotape.
If you fail the roadside tests or if you refuse to preform the roadside tests, you will likely be arrested. Once arrested, you will be asked to give a breath specimen and may be asked to preform additional “tests.” It is our advice that you tell the officer that you refuse to submit a breath specimen or take additional tests unless you are allowed to consult with an attorney. Again, you have no right to consult with an attorney before giving a breath specimen, but you cannot be forced to give a breath specimen. The machine that takes breath specimens is not always accurate.