You have a right to remain silent. Use it
Even if you haven't been placed under arrest yet, you do not need to answer questions about where you've been and what you've been drinking. BE POLITE, GIVE THE OFFICER YOUR DRIVER'S LICENSE AND PROOF OF INSURANCE, but don't offer up any more information. EVERYONE says they've just had one or two beers. DO NOT SAY THIS. Just politely tell the officer that you would like to speak to an attorney before answering any questions, and remain silent after that.
You do not have to submit to field sobriety test
Again, be polite, but refuse to submit. Any slight stumble or shaking can be used as evidence against you, even if you're just trembling from nerves. Don't be rude, but let the officer know that you will not submit to testing without speaking with an attorney first.
Portable Breath Test
These are handheld devices used at the scene of the stop to measure your blood alcohol content. These are not the breathalyzer machines that Missouri law requires you to submit to, and their results are not official, but they can be used in building the case for probable cause against you. Do not submit to this test. One way to know if it is the official breathalyzer test or not is that the officer will read you the implied consent warning before asking you to submit to the official breathalyzer test. Whether or not you should submit to that test is discussed below.
To blow or not to blow
There is no one right answer to this question. It depends largely on the circumstances of that evening, your personal history, and a myriad of other factors. When the officers read you the implied consent law, they are required to give you 20 minutes to contact an attorney before answering. Utilize this right and contact an experienced DWI attorney immediately.
Have I mentioned this yet? A bad attitude with the officers can and will affect how the prosecutor and judge handle your case.
Don't Forget, You're on Camera!
Often times people are unaware that the entire DWI stop, from the moment your vehicle is first spotted by police, to the moment you are placed in a cell, can be recorded on video. Frequently, after being placed in the police vehicle and while the officer is searching the defendant's car, the defendant will shout expletives or bang their head against the seat in frustration. Don't forget that all of these things can and will be used against you.
Don't think that being overly nice will get you out of this mess
--Too many times, a polite police officer is able to get full-blown confessions out of people just because they feel the overwhelming urge to be honest under the mistaken impression that honesty is the best policy in these situations. Wrong. Even the nicest officers have a job to do, and everything you say can and will be used against you
There has been much controversy over the constitutionality of sobriety check points. If you were stopped as a result of a sobriety checkpoint and were charged with DWI, there are many factors your attorney should look into to determine the constitutionality of the stop.
In the state of Missouri, sobriety checkpoints are not unconstitutional per se, but they must be conducted in a way that balances the legitimate public interest of keeping drunk drivers off the roadway against the right of individuals to be protected from warrantless search and seizure.
Some things the courts look to in determining this balance include: whether the roadblock was conducted according to a plan prepared in advance; whether the site of the roadblock was located in a place with a high concentration of DWI incidents; whether specific guidelines, locations and times were issued before implementation of the roadblock; whether an easy to read sign warning of the roadblock was posted and red flares were used for safety; whether the delay to each vehicle was minimal unless probable cause for further investigation was found; and whether cars were stopped at random.
GOOD ATTORNEY VERIFIES VALIDITY
All of these factors can be determined through the discovery process by your attorney. If you have any specific recollections about the way the checkpoint was conducted, you should write these down and share them with your attorney. It is imperative you contact DWI Counselors or other well-versed DWI defense attorney in order to properly assess your applicable situation and circumstances.