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Police Interaction


Find out the answers for the following question: Must You Get Out Of Your Car During A Traffic Stop? – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Police Interaction

Must You Get Out of Your Car During a Traffic
  • By Benjamin A. Tracy, Columbus Criminal Defense
    Lawyer and Civil Rights Attorney
  • Blog Post Must You Get Out Of Your Car During A
    Traffic Stop?
  • Koenig Long LLC

Lets Imagine the following situation
  • The police officer pulled you over at the side of
    the interstate for going 75mph in a 65mph zone.
  • Besides this the weather is unpleasant and cold.
  • Now the officer asks that you step out of your
    vehicle, he wants to pat you down.

Here Are the Possible Answers
  • The BEST answer You should definitely get out of
    your car. You should fully cooperate with the
    officer but you should tell him that you do not
    consent to the search
  • The CORRECT answer He is not allowed to pat you
    down but you must get out of your car.
  • The WRONG answer It is wrong to resist his
    attempts to pat you down and to refuse to get out
    of the car.

Useful Information
  • The U.S. Supreme Court decided many years ago
    that an officer has the right to order someone
    who has stopped for a traffic violation to get
    out of the car, so in this matter you do not have
    other choices, even if the officer does not have
    a good reason for asking you to get out of your
    car or if the weather is unpleasant.

Requests Which May Not Be Refused
  • May I please see your license? 
  • Would you please step out of your car?

Requests Which May, and Should, Be Refused
  • Would you please pop your trunk? 
  • Would you please open your glove-box so I can
    take a look?

What About the Pat Down Search?
  • An officer may conduct a pat down search only if
    he has reasonable suspicion or reason to think
    that you are dangerous and armed.
  • But our case is different, you have been stopped
    because of fast speeding.
  • Conclusion the officer doesnt have the right to
    pat you down because there are no clear reasons
    to believe that you have contraband or weapons,
    in this case the search would simply be a
    fishing expedition.

  • A person is never entitled to resist a police
    officer no matter if it is about violating your
    rights or patting you down
  • Solution you can come to the court later and
    assert a civil action or attempt to exclude any
    evidence the officer finds during the pat down

  • The CORRECT answer affirms that the officer is
    not allowed to pat you down
  • The BEST answer states that you cannot refuse to
  • What you should do Tell the officer you do not
    consent to the pat down process, this way it is
    clear that he does not have your consent if he
    chooses to pat you down

Contact Information
  • If you recognized yourself in the mentioned
    situation or have been arrested by any Columbus
    law enforcement agency, dont hesitate to contact
    our experts at Columbus Criminal Defense
    Attorneys, for a free initial consultation about
    your legal rights and possible defenses.
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