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Anatomy of a DUI Case: Stop & Arrest

Interviewer: What are the main elements of a DUI stop? Take me through the stages of a DUI investigation and an arrest. What are the basic things that happen to people?

Kevin Roach: Typically, when they get pulled over, the officer will approach the vehicle and ask them for their driver’s license. At that point in time, they’ll suspect you of drinking and driving. At some point, they’ll smell alcohol and they’ll ask you whether or not you’ve been drinking. Then if you answer yes or they have reason to believe that you have been drinking, they’ll ask you to exit the vehicle, and at that point they’ll administer the field sobriety tests. Typically, they’ll do the walk-and-turn, the one-leg stand, and the gaze nystagmus test.

After the officer determines whether or not you’ve passed or failed the tests, in the St. Louis area they will give you a portable breath test at that point if they’re still not sure. A lot of times they’ll just confirm that you have alcohol in your system. At that point, after they determine that you failed the field sobriety tests or you test positive for the portable Breathalyzer, they will cuff you and stuff you and take you to jail. Once you get back to the station, they will ask you additional questions. They typically will observe you for 15 minutes prior to administering the breath test, and then they would have you blow into the breathalyzer machine at the station.

Interviewer: At that point, once you blow, what will happen? Will they take your license right then and there? Has it already been taken?

Kevin Roach: Yes, they take your license. If you have a Missouri license, whether you refuse the breath test or whether you take the Breathalyzer test, they take your driver’s license if you blow 0.08 or higher.

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Kevin J. roach is a St. Louis DWI defense attorney who has defended thousands of DWI and DUI cases in the St. Louis Metro area. Call us today at (636) 519-0085 or (866) 519-0085 for your Free Consultation!

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