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How police spot a drunk driver

You probably know that the police need a reason to pull you over. They can't just pull over your car at random and give you a breath test to see if you have been drinking. They need to stop you for some sort of traffic violation, e.g., speeding, and then determine that you are potentially intoxicated or they need to see signs of intoxication while you drive.

So, what do they look for? A few key things include drivers who:

  • Swerve all over the road or from side to side in their lane
  • Drive with their lights off even though it is dark out and lights are clearly needed
  • Accelerate or decelerate far more quickly than necessary
  • Get into accidents, no matter how minor, or who have near misses
  • Drive the wrong way on the interstate or a one-way street
  • Make illegal or abrupt turns
  • Do not respond quickly to traffic control devices, such as stoplights
  • Signal one direction and turn in the other
  • Have one set of tires on each side of the centerline
  • Hit the brakes for no reason or who stop well before stop signs

These are just a few of the reasons that law enforcement officers may suspect that you are intoxicated. If you wind up getting pulled over, especially if you think that the police officers did not have a legally valid reason for the stop, you need to know all of your legal rights.

By working closely with your South Dakota criminal defense attorney, you can devise a strategy that could potentially lead to an acquittal or the charges being dropped.

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