Are You Required To Talk To The Police When Pulled Over For A DWI?
From the moment you are pulled over under suspicion of a DWI or driving while intoxicated, the traffic officer will start questioning you. The questions may sound friendly enough but the process is actually designed to get you to admit to drinking and driving without the officer needing to rightfully interrogate you. “Have you been drinking? How many drinks did you have? When was your last drink?” are all common questions that are asked.
In this situation, it is best to remain quiet even if the officer is intimidating or you feel impolite. You are not required to answer these questions and an officer cannot legally coerce you into a confession. Whether you answer the questions or not is entirely up to you at the end of the day.
Your Fifth Amendment RightIn just about all circumstances, it is usually recommended to follow the instructions of a police or traffic officer. However, when these instructions contravene your rights, it is not necessary to comply. Your Fifth Amendment Right provides you with the right to remain silent without any repercussions.
The Fifth Amendment provides this protection by guaranteeing that due process be followed when you are suspected or accused of committing a crime or when you have been charged with a crime or offense. As part of this due process, you are not required to answer any questions that may incriminate you in any way until you have spoken to a lawyer or attorney. Keep in mind, that anything you say or do can be held against you in a court of law. Therefore, you have the right to remain silent.
However, simply refraining from answering any questions could give the wrong impression. It is best to inform the officer that you would prefer to answer questions once you have spoken to an attorney and that you are taking the Fifth Amendment and remaining silent until your attorney arrives. This will have the added benefit of showing the officer that you are aware of your rights.
It is also not recommended to take your right to remain silent too seriously. Questions related to your contact and personal information such as your name and address should be answered as these cannot be misconstrued or used as evidence against you.
It is also highly recommended to contact an attorney who deals specifically with DWI cases. Butler Law Firm provides the best DWI attorney in Houston and deals exclusively with these types of cases and it is advisable to have their number saved on your phone in the event that you are pulled over under suspicion of a DWI. They will be able to provide you with the best advice and defense to protect your driving privileges and record.