A DUI traffic stop in Georgia can change the course of your life. One moment you are driving down the road, and the next you see flashing lights in your rearview mirror, signaling you to pull over. This is the start of a DUI traffic stop, and everything that happens from this point forward can have a negative impact on your future.
If you are facing DUI charges, you understand how important it is to defend yourself vigorously. Your future interests, personal freedom and driving privileges are all at stake. A strong defense strategy looks at every aspect of your case to determine the best approach for fighting back against these charges, and that may include looking at the original reason for your traffic stop. If there was no valid reason to pull you over, that detail could invalidate some or all of the evidence against you.
Pulling a driver over
You have constitutional rights, and that means that law enforcement cannot stop and question you without a legitimate reason to do so. When it comes to pulling over drivers for suspected drunk driving, law enforcement will look at various things to determine if a crime is taking place. Some of the most common reasons for stopping a driver, called reasonable suspicion, include the following:
- Drifting from lane to lane
- Driving at erratic speeds
- Braking frequently
- Making illegal turns
- Failing to yield or stop at intersections
These are all behaviors that could indicate a driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. After stopping a driver, law enforcement could then administer field sobriety tests to determine if a chemical test of the breath, blood or urine is necessary. Reasonable suspicion is what gives law enforcement the right to pull a driver over, but after that, there must be clear probable cause to make an arrest.
The right defense for you
If you are fighting DUI charges, this is not something you have to do on your own. It will be helpful to work with an experienced attorney at every step of the process, starting with a complete assessment and evaluation of your case. This can help you understand if you have grounds to challenge the circumstances of your arrest and what you can do to fight for the preservation of your future interests.