In Florida, police often make traffic stops when they observe or suspect drivers of moving violations. If you are pulled over, it’s important to know your rights and how you should conduct yourself.
Should you roll down your window?
Whenever a police officer requires you to pull over during a traffic stop, you should roll down both windows and stay patiently seated in your vehicle.
Be respectful at all times and keep your hands where the officer can see them. Be sure to turn off your engine and turn on the lights inside your vehicle if it’s dark outside. Don’t hand over any documentation unless the officer requests it from you. This could lead them to think you might be reaching for a weapon, which could lead to trouble.
You have the right to ask the officer to show you their badge or ID if you’re suspicious that they are not actually police.
Avoid incriminating yourself
One of the most important things to remember is to avoid incriminating yourself. Only directly answer all questions the officer asks. If you offer any additional information, it could be misconstrued and even used against you.
What if the officer asks you to get out of the car?
If an officer asks you to exit the car, you must do so. If they don’t, you’re under no obligation to do that.
Throughout the process of the traffic stop, stay calm and act respectfully toward the police officer. Once they have checked you and examined your driver’s license, registration and any other documents and given them back to you, you can ask if you’re free to leave.
Many traffic stops end uneventfully. If you were issued a ticket, you might want to fight it.