Challenging a Traffic Stop: What to Know

If you were recently stopped by the police and charged with possession of controlled substances, you may want to challenge that traffic stop. It can be tricky to actually fight a traffic stop with success, but there are certain circumstances in which all of the effort can be worth it. If you plan to challenge a traffic stop or a traffic ticket, there are five different approaches you may want to consider.

It is important to mention that fighting these on your own will probably not be fruitful. You want to have a knowledgeable drug lawyer on your side who can help you to make these arguments and convince the judge to throw your case out or void your charges.

So what can you do? Let’s take a look:

Probable Cause & Consent To Search

It is important to know that you do not have to consent to a search. Unless a police officer has a search warrant or probable cause to search you, you need to consent to the search. Even if the police officer has a reason to search, you do not need to consent. Refusing to provide consent can stop the officer from searching your car, but it can also do something even more powerful: it can be a valuable asset if you do end up getting charged with something.

You see, an experienced drug lawyer could be able to have your case thrown out if it was found that the officer was not legally allowed to search your car. This means that the officer has to believe that a crime was committed before he searches your car without your consent. This could mean that he smells marijuana or alcohol or sees it in plain view. Another reason a cop may search without consent is if he believes that his safety is in question. 

How Can I Properly Deny A Request To Search?

If you want to deny the request to search your car, you should always stay calm and be polite when addressing the police officer. Do not speak out of anger – anything you say can and will be used against you. If the police officer asks you if you know why you were pulled over, respond in the negative. Make sure that it is clear that you are not resisting, but also that you do not consent to the search.

You Can Sign The Ticket

There is a myth that you cannot challenge a traffic stop if you have signed the ticket. This is not true – signing the ticket does not admit to guilt. It means you have received your ticket, full stop. 

You are allowed to dispute your charges later, whether they are for something as simple as a citation for possession or a speeding ticket.

Don’t Assume The Officer Won’t Show Up

Many people think that the police officer who issued the charges won’t show up in court when you fight them, especially for small amounts of marijuana. This also isn’t true: police do show up in court quite frequently. That is why you absolutely need to have a drug lawyer on your side who knows your rights under the law.

No matter what situation you find yourself in, know that you will always have the right to speak privately with a drug attorney who will have your best interests in mind. Beyond simply defending you, an attorney will help you to understand what happened to you and what it could mean. An attorney should always be there to help you protect your rights and assure that you are treated properly by the legal system. 

Remember to keep a level head during any and all interactions with the police. Do not escalate the situation – it is not advisable. If you are asked to keep your hands on the steering wheel, do so. If they want you to sit down on the sidewalk, do it. It is not worth risking your life or your freedom. 

Are you ready to challenge a traffic stop? Think you were treated unfairly? Contact one of the top Nebraska interstate drug lawyers today – before any interactions with the legal system.