If you get pulled over by the police, it’s natural to feel rather stressed and concerned. You may think you didn’t do anything wrong. You may be worried about legal charges and potential ramifications. It’s just a stressful event all around.
At the same time, you’re very conscious of the fact that people do make mistakes during traffic stops that make their own situation worse. What are some of the examples of these mistakes so that you can know what to avoid?
Escalating the situation
One thing you want to do is focus on being polite and civil at all times. Even if you believe that the officer didn’t have a reason to pull you over, don’t be antagonistic or disrespectful. There are legal channels you can use to take action against an officer who has made a mistake, so you don’t need to escalate the situation during the traffic stop itself.
Getting out of the car
Unless the officer tells you to do so, you never want to get out of the car. Just roll down the window and talk to the officer that way, or they may perceive you as a threat.
It’s also important to remember that you don’t want to incriminate yourself and you don’t have to answer any questions. You usually do have to provide the officer with some sort of identification, and they may ask for your license and registration, but you don’t have to answer other questions that they have. It’s important not to say anything that can be used against you once you get in court.
If you do end up getting arrested, then it’s equally important to know about all of the legal options at your disposal.