No one wants to end up pulled over by a police officer after having a fun night out. Of course, officers have a job to do, and you could be the one who ends up in their line of sight for whatever initial reason. If an officer stops your vehicle and suspects that you are operating that vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you could face a serious predicament.
You may want to argue that you do not feel impaired or that you do not believe that the officer’s suspicions are correct, but it may be in your best interests to exercise your right to remain silent. Though remaining respectful and answering necessary questions is wise, you may want to gain information on your situation before speaking too freely with an officer.
You do not feel impaired
Even if you do not feel impaired or believe that your driving abilities suffered due to the few drinks you may have had earlier, you do not necessarily have to display signs of impairment in order to face a criminal charge in South Carolina. State law indicates that if you have a blood alcohol concentration level of 0.08% or higher, you have violated the per se statute. Though you may not face a DUI charge, you could face a DUAC charge, or driving with an unlawful alcohol concentration.
Refusing a breath test
You may think that you will not face a DUI or DUAC charge if officers do not know your BAC level, so you may consider refusing to take a breath test to avoid providing that evidence. However, you could face negative repercussions for refusing the test. Under implied consent laws, it is a requirement that you submit to BAC level testing. If you do not, you could face a 6-month driver’s license suspension automatically. That suspension could increase to 9 months if you have a previous alcohol-related conviction.
Unfortunately, the traffic stop may not go in your favor, and if you end up facing a DUI or DUAC charge, it is in your best interests to determine how you could fight back against the allegations. The most viable options for your particular case will depend on the specific factors involved. In efforts to gain reliable information and assistance for your ordeal, you may wish to enlist the help of an attorney.