Most DUI arrests stem from people violating common traffic laws such as making an illegal u-turn or running a red light. The violation of such laws permits police officers to question drivers if they suspect the driver is driving under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance after pulling them over. Read on to learn more about traffic violations that commonly lead to DUI arrests in Washtenaw County.
Common Traffic Violations
A traffic violation occurs when a driver violates local and/or state motor vehicle laws. The driver can be charged with violating a traffic law, such as an illegal left turn, in addition to a DUI. The illegal left turn can result in a civil infraction. The DUI traffic offense could result in being charged with a misdemeanor or felony depending on the nature of the case.
The police officer will need a reasonable suspicion that a crime has recently been committed or about to be committed in order to pull the driver over. In most circumstances, the driver will likely violate a traffic offense first prior to the officer pulling him/her over. This will provide the officer with the probable cause needed to either issue the driver a ticket for violating a traffic offense in addition to investigating the possibility that the driver is intoxicated. The officer will look for visible signs of intoxication and request to perform a field breathalyzer test or a series of field sobriety tests to determine whether the driver is intoxicated.
If there is no evidence of intoxication, the officer will release the driver and cite him/her for violating a traffic offense.
If the driver has not violated a traffic offense, the police officer will have no right to pull the driver over or detain him/her for further investigation. If the driver is arrested on false grounds and is wrongfully charged with a DUI, the driver can later sue the police department for false arrest. Unfortunately, several individuals have been falsely arrested for a DUI in Washtenaw County. Contact an attorney ASAP to protect your rights if you believe you have been falsely arrested.
Note, being involved in a car accident is sufficient reasonable suspicion to detain a person and investigate whether or not he/she may be intoxicated.
I invite you to contact me to discuss your DUI case in more detail. I provide free drunk driving case consultations to Washtenaw County residents. You can call me at (734)274-6567 or email me to schedule a consultation.