Getting pulled over by the police can be a stressful and intimidating experience, especially if you are not sure about your rights. Here are some tips to help you handle the situation calmly and respectfully.
Pull over safely
As soon as you see the Oregon City Police Department car’s lights or hear its siren, slow down and look for a safe place to pull over. This could be a shoulder, a parking lot or a side street. Signal your intention to pull over and move to the right as soon as possible. Do not stop in the middle of the road, block traffic or make sudden turns or stops.
Stay in your car
Unless the police officer instructs you otherwise, stay in your car with your seat belt on and your hands visible on the steering wheel. Do not reach for anything in your glove compartment, console or pockets. This could be seen as a threat by the officer. Wait for the officer to approach your window and roll it down when asked.
Be polite and cooperative
When the officer asks for your license, registration and proof of insurance, provide them politely and without argument. Giving false information to the officer can lead to more trouble. If you have a question or concern, ask it respectfully and calmly. Do not argue, curse or raise your voice at the officer.
Know your rights
Regardless of how you come in contact with the police, you do not have to consent to a search. This includes a search of your body and car. And, you do not have to speak with the officer. You also have the right to ask for the Oregon officer’s name and badge number and to request a supervisor, if you feel you are being treated unfairly. However, you must comply with the officer’s lawful orders, such as providing your identification or stepping out of the car, if asked. If you refuse to cooperate with a lawful order, you could be arrested or charged with resisting arrest.
Follow up after the stop
Depending on the reason for the stop, you may receive a citation, a warning or no action at all. If you receive a citation, you will have to pay a fine or appear in court to contest it. If you receive a warning, you will not have to pay anything or go to court, but it will be recorded in your driving record. If you receive no action, you are free to go without any consequences. In any case, you should review the details of the stop and make sure you understand what happened and what you need to do next.