Police Stop Procedures

Police Stop Procedure

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The police can stop a vehicle for any reason. If they ask you to stop, you should always pull over. You’re breaking the law if you don’t.

police stopIf you’re stopped, once the police stop you they can ask to see your:

driving licence

insurance certificate

MOT certificate

If you don’t have these documents with you, you have 7 days to take them to a police station. You’re breaking the law if you don’t show the requested documents within 7 days.

The police stop can also give you an on-the-spot fixed penalty notice for many minor offences and make you take a breath test in certain circumstances.

You can also have your vehicle seized if you’re stopped on suspicion of driving without insurance and for some other offences.

Breath testsbreatherlizer

The police stop you at any time and ask you to take a breath test (‘breathalyse’ you) if:

they think you’ve been drinking

you’ve committed a traffic offence

you’ve been involved in a road traffic accident

If you refuse to take a breath test, or fail to supply a sample of breath and don’t have a ‘reasonable excuse’, you can be arrested. A reasonable excuse could be a genuine physical or mental condition stopping you from giving a sample.

The breath test gives a result straight away. If it shows you’re not over the drink drive limit, you must be allowed to go.

If you fail the breath test, you’ll be taken to a police station and given 2 more breath tests. If they’re positive, you may be charged.

If you fail a breath test you can’t drive your car until you are sober. You can ask someone else to collect your car for you.

Minor motoring offences

The police stop can give you a ‘fixed penalty notice’ for many of the less serious traffic offences. If you get a fixed penalty notice this can result in a fine and/or penalty points on your licence.

If you build up 12 points within 3 years you could be disqualified from driving.

However, for minor offences the police also have the option of:

taking no action

issuing a warning

offering driver training (in some cases)

prosecuting you

If you disagree with a fixed penalty notice

You can choose not to pay the fixed penalty if you believe that it was given unjustly, but you’ll have to argue your case in court.

 

Proper Police stop Procedures in Traffic Stops

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Making a vehicle stop for a police officer can be very dangerous for the officer and frightening for the person being stopped. Police officers generally follow the same general protocol.

Legal Justification

A police officer cannot legally stop a car unless the driver has violated a law (typically criminal or vehicular in nature) or the officer has a “reasonable suspicion” that the driver is about to engage in criminal activity based on specific and articulate facts and inferences.
“Run” the Number Plate Prior to stopping a vehicle, it is common practice to “run” the cars plates; that is, to input the car’s number plate number into the state motor vehicle database to learn who the vehicle belongs to, and whether or not the owner or driver has any outstanding warrants or other violations.
Code 3 After the driver’s information is obtained, the law enforcement officer changes his status to Code 3, a response used to describe a mode of response for an emergency vehicle responding to a call. 
The Stop Once the driver has stopped, the officer should park a minimum of 20 feet behind the vehicle and offset his/her alignment inside the driver’s car.
The Approach Police officers ideally approach the vehicle quickly but cautiously, trying to be observant of how many people are in the vehicle, their movements and the driver’s
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