Driving while you are either high or drunk is a crime that is punishable by Arizona’s zero-tolerance law. If you get a DUI arrest in Scottsdale, Arizona you can face some heavy fines, along with the suspension of your driving privileges. These are things that can really cause a lot of upheaval in your life because of one poor decision on your behalf. They are things you really must be knowledgeable about and understand so you are prepared to take preventive measures now or corrective measures later.
Why You May be Stopped for DUI in Scottsdale
The police in Scottsdale typically only stop someone on suspicion of a DUI if they are exhibiting obvious signs of impairment. However, we all know that there are occasional times when the police become overly aggressive when they are hunting down drunk drivers. When this happens, they may stop you without a “justifiable” or “reasonable” cause to believe that you’re intoxicated. If they have you tested for intoxication and your blood shows that you are, then you may be convicted of a DUI.
When you’re stopped for a DUI the officer will look for signs of intoxication, including:
- Bloodshot eyes
- Odors indicating you’ve used a substance
- Slurred speech
- Watery eyes
If an officer detects any of these signs, they will ask you if you have been drinking. Make sure you answer honestly without giving any information that is not requested. You may also be asked to step out of your vehicle at which time you will want to remain your composure because the officer will note whether you had trouble following their orders.
How to React When You Are Stopped for a Potential DUI Arrest in Arizona
It’s important to understand that you can’t be even “slightly” impaired when you are operating a motor vehicle in the state of Arizona. Obviously, each person has a different tolerance level so what you consume before you get behind the wheel will be different from what someone else consumes. This means that while you may only consume a small amount of a substance before seeming like you are impaired, another person may need to consume a lot more of the substance before this happens to them. With this in mind, here are a few ways in which you can avoid a DUI arrest in Arizona:
- Don’t drink or use illegal drugs. While this is the most obvious answer, it is not one that everyone wants to hear. However, there is truth in the fact that if you don’t have any substance in your system, you simply won’t be convicted.
- Don’t drive after you have used any substance. When an officer stops you because you have shown signs of intoxication they will order a drug test. If they find any signs of any substance in your body, your Arizona DUI case will become much less defensible. Even if you are taking a prescribed medication, you should still talk to your doctor to find out if he thinks it is okay for you to drive or operate heavy machinery after you have taken the drug.
- Never admit that you have had “a few drinks,” even when you are stopped because an officer suspects you have had said drinks. They can then use any admission you make to build a criminal case against you.
- Politely refuse to take any field sobriety tests. This is in your best interest because any mistakes you make while taking the test can be used against you if your case goes to court.
What Happens When You’re Arrested for a DUI in Arizona?
Before you are arrested, you will typically undergo a few tests, including:
- Sobriety tests when you step out of your vehicle: Make sure you refuse to do so because even a sober driver can have difficulty successfully completing this test. It is important to understand that you will be required to complete one sobriety test though, so you can avoid having your license suspended.
- A preliminary breathalyzer test (PBT): This is used to register your blood alcohol content (BAC), but its results can’t be used against you when you go to court. The only thing this is used for is to help the officer conduct the DUI arrest in Scottsdale. You should not refuse this test. If you refuse the sobriety test, you will automatically be arrested and taken into custody, although you still may not be convicted of a DUI.
Being Arrested for DUI in Arizona
When an officer suspects you are intoxicated, they will handcuff your hands behind your back and seat you in the back of their vehicle, so you can’t force yourself to vomit before taking the breathalyzer test when you arrive at the jail. These results can be used against you as evidence in court. If you refuse both tests, you will automatically have your driver’s license suspended for a year, regardless of whether you are ultimately convicted of a DUI in Scottsdale, AZ.
Before transporting you to the jail, an officer will ask you some questions. It is up to you if you want to talk to them or ask for your attorney first. Regardless of your choice, make sure you omit any information you are not obligated to give them (e.g. your driver’s license, registration, and insurance). After you have done so and submitted to at least one sobriety test, you might be allowed to either have a sober friend or a cab pick you up from the jail. There are some circumstances when this won’t apply though. For instance, if there is a current warrant for your arrest, you have been aggressive with a police officer, or you didn’t provide identification, you may be staying there a bit longer.
As soon as you are released from a DUI arrest in Arizona, you should contact Alcohol Screening Scottsdale at (602) 682-7017. You will also want to make sure you find experienced legal representation to defend you against the prosecution in court. Between what advice and services we can offer, and the advice your legal counsel can offer, you are far less likely to struggle with the consequences of a DUI arrest in Arizona.