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Common mistakes to avoid if pulled over

On Behalf of | May 18, 2021 | Criminal Defense |

When an officer pulls you over in North Carolina, there are several things that you should avoid doing. If you act in a way that the offer deems to be suspicious, you might increase your chances of getting much more than a traffic citation. Here are some things to avoid doing when you see a police vehicle’s lights in your rearview mirror.

Failing to pull over immediately

When a police officer signals for you to pull over, you should do so at the first safe place that you can. If you do not pull over or try to evade the police, you can get into serious trouble. Even if you might have a warrant out for your arrest or committed some other offense, it is better to pull over for the police than add serious charges on top of what you may already be facing.

Acting suspiciously and failing to assert your rights

When an officer stops your vehicle, he or she will be observing you before he or she even reaches your car. Keep both of your hands on the wheel, and avoid reaching into your glove box or under your seat. If the officer cannot see your hands, he or she may suspect that you are trying to hide something or have a weapon. Once the officer reaches your window, give him or her your driver’s license, registration and insurance information. Be polite, but do not answer any questions beyond giving your identifying information. If the officer asks to search your car, politely refuse. Do not think that you can talk your way out of being arrested. If the officer decides to place you under arrest for a crime, assert your rights to remain silent and have a criminal defense attorney represent you.

Being pulled over by the police can be a nerve-wracking experience. If you remain polite; avoid erratic or nervous behavior; and simply hand over your driver’s license, registration, and insurance card to the officer, the stop may be resolved with little to worry about. If you, instead, fail to immediately stop, behave nervously, are rude or talk too much, you could end up facing criminal charges by making the situation worse.

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