Common Questions about DUI
Can Police Pull You Over For No Reason?
Police, State Patrol and other law enforcement are not allowed to pull you over for no reason. However, if they are searching for intoxicated drivers late at night or around bar close it’s not hard for a police officer to generate a reason to pull you over. The police might have pulled you over for something minor like:
- A burnt-out license plate light
- Failing to signal a turn
- Improper lane change
- Failing to come to a complete stop
Once they have pulled you over, they will likely question you about where you were or where you are going. While you technically do not have to answer these types of questions the entire pullover will likely go much smoother if you do. However, do not give additional information, answer with short, but polite answers. Some of the things that police will be looking for that they can use to expand the pullover into a full DUI investigation include:
- Bloodshot or watery eyes
- Nervous behavior
- Smell or other evidence suggesting the presence of alcohol
- Fumbling with license or other documents
Is It Possible to Beat a DUI Charge in North Dakota?
The facts around your specific case will dictate the best way to work towards the best possible end for your case. There are times where the breath test result was questionable, or we can challenge whether the police officer had the right to stop you in the first place. There are also times when the evidence against the driver is very strong and it makes more sense to work with the prosecutor on sentencing.
I Was Not Driving. Can I Still Get a DUI?
If you are in control of the vehicle, you can still be charged for a DUI even if you are not driving. That means that if you are asleep on the side of the road in your car, you can be charged. There have even been situations where someone is simply drinking in their garage or driveway and the police have tried to make the case that they are in control of the vehicle because the keys are in the ignition or they are listening to the radio. The DUI statute does not say “Driving” it refers to “control of the vehicle” so in a word, NO… you do NOT have to actually be driving to get arrested for DUI in North Dakota.
Can I Refuse the Breath Test?
Generally refusing a breath test is a bad idea, as refusal is actually it’s own crime. The penalties you will face for refusing the PBT (Preliminary Breath Test) are often harsher than if you are convicted of the DUI. If you have already refused a breath test, you may be able to “cure” the refusal by pleading guilty to the DUI within 25 days. If you have already refused a test and would like to try to plead guilty to cure your refusal contact my office immediately as this is not something you want to try to handle on your own.