Are Local Law Enforcement Still On Your Side?Written on June 3, 2015
Over the past several months there have been a number of highly publicized incidents involving the police and citizens. Some of those incidents have received a great deal of media attention and public scrutiny. The reality is, law enforcement personnel have contact with citizens every day and it isn’t on the news. That’s because nothing noteworthy takes place. The incidents that have been covered by the media are truly few and far between. That being said, it’s important to know what your rights are, as well as your legal obligations, when stopped by the police.
If you are pulled over by the police, you are required to produce your driver’s license. Just because you are stopped doesn’t mean you have done anything wrong. Police officers aren’t allowed to pull a vehicle over because of the race, gender, or nationality of the driver. Police officers must have probable cause for making a traffic stop.
If you are issued a citation, the attorneys at The Silverbach Group recommend that you sign it. Your signature on a citation isn’t an admission of guilt. Your signature merely acknowledges your receipt of the ticket, along with a court date, and prevents you from going to jail. The citation itself will have very clear instructions on the back. You can choose to pay the fine or go to court to “fight the ticket.” If you choose to not sign the citation, you will be arrested and taken to jail. You will then have to post bond in order to be released.
If you are stopped for suspicion of drunk driving, you will most likely be asked to take a breath or blood test. Every person who receives a Georgia driver’s license is required to submit to such tests or have their license automatically suspended for one year. This requirement falls under the law of Implied Consent. You have probably heard all sorts of advice when it comes to DUI breath and blood related tests. The ultimate choice is yours, but it’s important to remember the consequences if you refuse the tests.
The most important thing to remember when dealing with law enforcement is to be cordial and do what is asked of you. The vast majority of the time, encounters with the police aren’t violent. In fact, a good attitude just might get you out of that speeding ticket. If you are combative, or non-compliant, you could face additional charges. Obstructing or Hindering Law Enforcement Officers is a common charge resulting from an individual fighting with the police or not doing what they are asked to do.
Every person in The United States has rights that are protected under the Constitution. Just because you are stopped by the police doesn’t mean you forfeit those rights. If you believe your rights have been violated, or you have been charged with a crime, contact The Silverbach Group today. We are an experienced law firm here to help. You can reach us at 770-635-0334.