Articles Posted in Fifth Amendment Rights

Many of our clients mistakenly believe that a DUI charge is based on their admission of having been drinking. Although their admissions contribute to a huge part of prosecution, a person may still be charged with a DUI, even when they have chosen to remain silent.

When an officer first chooses to have you pull over, he must have a reasonable cause for doing so. A majority of the time it is because the driver has committed a traffic violation. This can be anything from speeding, to and illegal U-turn. Regardless of the offense, it gives the officer grounds to pull you over.

In some situations, the driver may already be pulled over. For example, he may have started driving and felt that he was impaired so he has pulled over. Or there may be car trouble or an accident that has caused the driver to stop on the street or the highway. When a driver is already pulled over, the officer will conduct what is known as a welfare check. The driver does not have to have violated the traffic code, or committed any other offense for the officer to come check up on the driver.

Many of our clients are concerned about statements they have made during a DUI arrest. During an arrest, any statements that you make to officers may be included in the officer’s arrest report. The officer’s report and observations then are used in Court as evidence against the person being charged. Therefore, statements made during the arrest can be crucial to your case, and should be made carefully.

At the time of arrest, many people are scared and have not dealt with law enforcement before. Feeling that honesty is at issue and that they are required to answer any questions the officer may ask, the person being arrested usually fully complies and gives any answers the officers are looking for.

However, every person has a right against self incrimination. This is their fifth amendment right, which protects every person from having to provide evidence that can be used against them when they are being prosecuted. The fifth amendment right extends to any kind of arrest, including DUI arrests. This means that when a driver has been stopped by officers for suspicion of driving while intoxicated, they have the right to remain silent.