Police May Not Lawfully Stop a Driver for Failing to Use Turn Signal
October 11, 2011

Most DUI arrests begin with a traffic stop.  Once you have been pulled over, the police officer may conduct an investigation, after which they may arrest you and charge you with driving under the influence.  An officer needs probably cause to pull you over though.  In other words, you need to have violated a traffic law for the stop to be legal.  An experienced Orange County DUI lawyer can determine if the traffic stop was legal, and attempt to suppress all evidence against you for a DUI charge or any other subsequent charge that may be filed against you.

One common traffic violation is failure to use a turn signal. Under California law, a driver must use their vehicle turn signal in the event any other vehicle may be affected by driver’s movement.  A driver in violation of this law may be stopped by a police officer, detained and a citation issued.  Also, if you are detained, a police officer may likely look for probable cause to investigate you or search your vehicle and may find contraband, such as drugs or alcohol.

An exception to this rule is if there are no other cars on the road.  For example, if you are driving late at night on an empty road and fail to signal prior to making a turn, there is no violation. Therefore, if a police officer pulls you over for not using your turn signal when there are absolutely no other cars on the road, and you are then subsequently charged with a crime, a Court must exclude all evidence of that crime at trial.

If you have been arrested as the result of a search conducted of your vehicle following a traffic stop, it is extremely important that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who can exclude the evidence at trial.  If you or a loved one is charged with a crime, you should contact our experienced defense attorneys at Wallin and Klarich.  We have been protecting the rights of individuals accused of crimes for over three decades. You can call us at (877) 466-5245, we will be there when you call.

Your Answer

Contact Us

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.