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5 Things you need to know if you get pulled over

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1. Act in a manner which gives the officer no reason to question his safety. You can do this

  • Putting your “4 ways” on and moving over to the side of the road that is a safe
    area for the officer to approach your vehicle
  • Roll down the window and place your hands on the steering wheel, do not
    attempt to retrieve your license and registration at this point in time as the
    officer may think you are attempting to hide something. You will have sufficient
    time to do this after he approaches your window.
  • If it is night time, turn your dome light on so that the interior of your vehicle is
    easily visible to the officer.

2. Remain Silent (to a certain extent).

  • The officer may try to get you to admit the traffic violation that led to your stop.
    If the officer asks something like, “do you know how fast you were going?”, you
    should answer politely, “no officer”. Any statements you make to the officer can
    be used in court, so it is important to be careful not to incriminate yourself.

3. Police must have probable cause to search your vehicle.

  • Probable cause is an observation an officer observes which leads him or her to
    believe criminal activity is present within the vehicle.
  • If there is no apparent probable cause established, the officer is permitted to
    search your vehicle only if they have your consent.
  • If the officer asks you something along the lines of “can I take a look in your car”,
    you do not have to consent and can say politely, “No officer, I do not consent”.

4. Inquire whether you are free to go.

  • If the officer continues to ask you questions, simply ask him “am I free to go or
    am I being detained”?
  • If the officer continues to ask you questions, repeat the above.

5. Ask for an Attorney.

  • If you are not free to go and the officer continues to question you, you have
    been detained. If this happens, tell the officers, “I’d like to speak with my
    attorney and remain silent”.
  • Call Bonarigo & McCutcheon at 585-344-1994 and we will assist you to the best
    of our ability.