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Don't get busted

Common sense tips this season

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First of all, let it be known that the Weekly Volcano absolutely, positively, in no way, shape, or form condones drunk driving. In fact, the Weekly Volcano thinks drunk driving is ridiculous and much prefers to hail a cab or drunk dial a friend when searching for a way home at 2 a.m. after multiple cocktails. However, with the holidays upon us and DUI crackdowns going on in full force, the Weekly Volcano also knows that at least a few of our readers will be caught this December with flashing lights in the rearview mirror and booze on their breath. Since a DUI conviction can wreak havoc on even a good person’s life, we’d like to offer a few tips for those who find themselves on the side of the road this Christmas attempting to walk a straight line and reciting the alphabet backwards.

Keep your drunken mouth shut — The typical human response to being stopped by the cops is to try to explain yourself. Avoid this temptation! There is absolutely nothing you can say that will help. Unless you have a lawyer present (and who’s lucky enough to be busted for DUI with their lawyer riding shotgun?), just keep quiet. It’ll be difficult at the time but will only help you in the long run.

Be polite — It’s simple. If you’re an asshole to the cop, the cop will probably be an asshole to you, as will the prosecutor, as will the judge. Keeping your rights in mind, and acting in your own best interest, be as polite and cooperative as possible.

Pull over like you’re not tanked — Remember that scene in “Tommy Boy” when David Spade and Chris Farley are stoned on Nitrous Oxide? Remember how they got stopped by the cops and pulled over in the middle of the freeway? Remember how incriminating that looked? Trust me, if you pull over like you just spent eight hours at Ida’s, chances are the cop will come to that conclusion too. Plus, juries will sometimes excuse the minor traffic infraction that got you noticed by the cop in the first place, but they almost never excuse traffic infractions after the police lights are on.

Don’t take the field sobriety test — Dude. You’re not going to pass. You’re stupid enough to be drunk driving in the first place, and you haven’t stretched in years. The field sobriety test will only make this obvious or, worse, convince the cop just how loaded you are.

Do take the breath test — Refusal to take the breath test almost always screws you in the long run. It can easily lead to the suspension of your license and increased penalties. Most lawyers would much rather fight the admissibility of a breath test than subject a client to the repercussions of refusing one.

Get a lawyer, stat! — Just because you own seasons one through five of “Law and Order” doesn’t mean you know the legal system, bro. A lawyer is the only shot in hell you have of escaping this whole embarrassing ordeal with the shirt on your back and some amount of self dignity (meaning you aren’t forced to ride public transit). Hire a reputable DUI defense lawyer pronto. It’s worth the money.   

Better yet, don’t drink and drive this holiday season. It’ll keep people safe and keep you from relying on DUI advice from the Weekly Volcano. If your life comes to that point, it’s time take a long hard look in the mirror.

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