If a policeman pulls you over, the things you say and do will have a big impact on any subsequent legal action. Whether you are charged with a straightforward moving violation, or arrested for a more severe offense, your decisions are crucial.
When a police vehicle is chasing you - blaring its' siren and flashing its' lights - promptly pull your car over and stop somewhere safe, on the right hand side of the road.
Pulling your car over immediately does not incriminate you at all. It simply means that you paid attention to what was occurring around you. Furthermore, by pulling over as quickly as possible, you will have a greater likelihood of understanding why the officer believes you have contravened a traffic rule. This data can be helpful if you and an attorney later have to get a defense ready.
Pull your car over in a manner that is more likely to pacify a frustrated policeman. Utilize your turn indicator to signify any changes of lane, and decelerate reasonably fast, but not so fast that the policeman will need to brake suddenly to avoid a collision. Pull your car over to the right, so that the policeman will not be struck by cars when approaching your window.
Once you have stopped in a safe place, you should switch your engine off. Now, you may wish to offer several other courtesies to the policeman. You have nothing to lose and maybe much to gain.
Pull your window down fully. Put both hands onto your steering wheel, then - if it is dark - switch your interior light on. Doing these things will usually ease any worries the policeman may have. Suffice to say, policemen have lost their lives when carrying out traffic stops, and the policeman's approach to the car is often the most hazardous moment.
Moreover, remain in your vehicle unless and until the policeman tells you to do otherwise. Lastly, do not begin feeling for your insurance details, driving license or wallet in your glove compartment or back pocket, until the policeman requests them. Otherwise, the officer might think that you are looking for a gun.
Typically, you should allow the policeman do the speaking, and respond when necessary. For instance, when he asks you for your driving license, insurance proof and registration, you ought to say "OK", "No problem", or something similar - before handing over the paperwork.
Some attorneys say that policemen who pull vehicles over for traffic violations have already decided whether to issue tickets or not, prior to approaching the drivers (also, they recognize that you can provoke a policeman, who originally intended to let you off with a warning, to issue you with a speeding ticket if you are rude to them). These attorneys say that policemen will occasionally act as if they may change their mind if you comply, so that they will get a confession or other information from you.
It is difficult to know precisely how to act when a policeman questions you, however -- if nothing else -- you should avoid arguing with them. Take heed of the above advice and you are far less likely to fall foul of the law.
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