There’s nothing worse than being pulled over by the police when driving, as this can be an anxiety-inducing event for many. If you were pulled over, you might think the ticket you received isn’t a big deal but rather a minor inconvenience. However, if you’re unfamiliar with the severity of the charge, it can cause significant issues. Keep reading to learn how to navigate an interaction with the police and how a Spring Valley traffic violation attorney can help.
What Should I Do if I Get Pulled Over?
If you’re driving and you notice a police car behind you with its lights on, you’re likely being pulled over. Be sure to pull over safely to avoid any further implications that you’ve committed a traffic violation. You should also ensure you use your turn signal to indicate to the officer that you understand the situation.
Once you come to a stop, you’ll need to prepare for the interaction. You should begin by rolling down the window, turning your engine and lights off, and turning on your interior lights if it’s dark outside. Be sure not to remove your seatbelt or reach around the vehicle. This may make the office hostile as they are fearful you reached for a weapon.
Do I Need to Answer Questions?
The officer will likely ask you an array of questions when stopped, as many of these questions are framed in a way that will accidentally implicate you in a crime.
Though you may think being honest is the best option, it can end with you in handcuffs, while lying can make you unreliable. Instead, refrain from answering any questions, as silence is not an admission of guilt. You are allowed to remain silent when interacting with officers.
In most instances, the only information you are legally obligated to provide when asked is your license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance.
You also do not need to consent to a vehicle search. Unless the officer has reasonable suspicion that there is evidence of a crime, they cannot search your car without a warrant. Be sure to state that you do not consent to a search if asked.
Do I Need a Lawyer?
If stopped while driving for whatever reason, ensuring you have a lawyer is essential. Though a reckless driving ticket may not seem like a big deal, it’s a misdemeanor charge in New York, meaning it’s criminal. This will appear on your permanent record.
Ensuring you have a competent lawyer to represent you and help you fight any ticket you may receive is essential. Too many points on your license can lead to a suspended license and hefty fines. Some charges, like reckless driving or DUIs, are criminal, so you must have the guidance of a seasoned attorney to assist.
Reach out to Kevin T. Conway to discuss the details of your case with a dedicated attorney.