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What should I expect during a DUI arrest?

A drunk driving arrest in New Hampshire usually goes something like the following. First, the driver is traveling down the roadway on his or her way home for the evening. Second, the driver sees flashing police lights and pulls over for the police. Third, the driver is rolling down his window and doing everything he or she can to be cooperative with the police officer.

At this point, a New Hampshire police officer will be evaluating everything about the driver that has been pulled over. The officer will be looking for signs of drunkenness, such as bloodshot eyes, alcohol on the breath, slurred speech and slowed reactions. If the police officer decides that the driver may be inebriated, the officer will request that the driver step out of the vehicle to perform several field sobriety tests.

Although most people have never been subjected to a field sobriety test, they generally tend to know what they entail, and once the test begins -- even if you are not inebriated -- it can be extremely nerve-racking to complete. In fact, a lot of completely sober drivers have been known to fail a sobriety test out of nervousness.

Finally, the police officer will ask the driver to perform a breathalyzer test, which examines the blood to alcohol ratio in the person's body. If the breathalyzer shows a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or more, then the individual will be considered too drunk to legally drive.

Police will evaluate all that they see during a traffic stop before they make the determination to arrest an allegedly drunk driver. However, that does not mean that they always arrest individuals correctly, and New Hampshire courts are well aware of this fact. This is why everyone accused of a crime -- no matter how serious or small -- will have the opportunity to assert legal defenses in court to preserve their innocence and avoid unfounded punishment.

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