The minute you see the flashing lights behind you, you can feel your heart beating harder. You wonder why police are pulling you over and what might happen during this traffic stop. You’re even more nervous because you have some meth in your glove compartment. Will officers search your car? Will police arrest you?
The first step after police pull you over is to remain calm. You should keep your hands where officers can see them and avoid any awkward or suspicious movements. You shouldn’t give officer any reason to want to search your car. You should be polite and courteous when interacting with the officer.
Knowing your rights
You also should know what rights you have in a traffic stop. These includes the right to stay silent. You don’t have to tell officers where you are going or where you came from. You don’t have to tell them what you are doing. You shouldn’t lie, though, as that can hurt you if police arrest during the traffic stop. Your best bet is to decline answering any questions.
You don’t have to consent to police searching your car. However, if the police suspect you have a gun or are involved in criminal activity, they may frisk you. If they see any drug paraphernalia out in the open in your car, they can search your vehicle.
If you are passenger in the car, you can ask if you are free to go if the traffic stop becomes more involved.
If police arrest you
If you are arrested because an officer finds drugs or paraphernalia, you should stay silent and immediately request to contact an attorney. You don’t want to say anything that may hurt your defense and make it easier for police to convict you.
Remember that you can mount a defense against any criminal charges you face after a traffic stop. Working with an experienced defense attorney can help you get the best outcome in your case and reduce any long-term consequences.