Things Police Look for at DUI Stop


The below list contains those things police officers most commonly look for when performing an initial traffic stop and DUI investigation.

1.  Flushed face

Defense points: Does officer know what your normal complexion looks like? There are other reasons for a flushed complexion unrelated to DUI or criminal activity.

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2.  Red, watery, glassy and/or bloodshot eyes

Defense points: There are other reasons for a flushed complexion unrelated to DUI or criminal activity. Client was up late and thus tired? Allergies?

3.  Odor of alcohol on breath

Defense points: Alcohol (Ethanol) is odorless. What specific beverage (beer, wine, whiskey) was detected? Doesn’t nonalcoholic beer smell just like regular beer?

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4.  Slurred speech

Defense points:  Does officer know client’s normal speech pattern? Another reason for supposed slurred speech: Was client in accident? Did client sustain injury about head or face?

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5.  Fumbling with wallet trying to get license

Defense points: Fumbling is nature result of being nervous. Who among us is not anxious when a police officer pulls us over even for speeding or minor traffic violation.

6.  Combative, argumentative, jovial or other “inappropriate” attitude

Defense points: If you are somber police will say you are in a daze. If you are talkative, police will say you are excitable. Keep conversation to a minimum. Tell police you have always been told to not answer questions for your own protection.

7.  Failure to comprehend the officer’s questions

Defense points: Is client an inexperienced driver? Could failure to comprehend be result of ongoing anxiety about traffic stop? Choosing not answer, or a reluctance to answer increasingly probing question, is a conscience protection of rights and not a sign of intoxication.

8.  Leaning on car for support

Defense points: Was stop done late at night with oncoming traffic’s headlights as well as police cruiser emergency light in client’s eyes as client exited vehicle. Placement of hand and/or leaning on vehicle for support provides client awareness and sense of support in disorienting environment.

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