The Police Use Very Specific Techniques
When Investigating a Driver for DUI

These Techniques Are Separated Into Stages
and Typically Include Observation,
Questioning, and Testing

Sometimes, Officers Even Use Deceit
In Order to Obtain Incriminating Evidence
Against A DUI Defendant

I Use a Number of DUI Defense Strategies
that Can Mitigate Evidence Obtained
Through These Investigations

These Strategies Can Help
to Get Your Case Dismissed or Reduced.

Find Out More Below...

DUI Investigation Stage Two

Stage Two of the Ohio DUI/OVI Investigation—Personal Contact

The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) advises that the first task of Phase Two begins as soon as the suspected DUI/OVI driver’s vehicle and the officer’s car have come to a complete stop. It continues during the officer’s approach to the driver’s vehicle and includes all conversation between the officer and the driver prior to the driver’s exit from the vehicle. While observations during stage one may have caused the officer to suspect the driver is impaired, it is the face-to-face exchange that provides the first definite indications that the suspected DUI/OVI driver may be under the influence.

NHTSA further advises officers that this initial interview with the driver, as well as prior observations from stage one, will form the basis for any decision to instruct the driver to step out of the vehicle. This is typically a discretionary decision and based on what the officer sees, hears and smells during the face-to-face exchange. If the officer instructs the suspected DUI/OVI driver to exit the vehicle, he will be watching closely to see if the driver exhibits any signs of impairment as he gets out of the car.

The Ohio Police Officer, Sheriff’s Deputy, or State Highway Patrolman is looking for the following indications of impairment, or clues as he observes the driver and interior of the vehicle:

  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Soiled clothing
  • Fumbling fingers
  • Alcohol containers
  • Drugs or drug paraphernalia
  • Bruises, bumps or scratches on the suspected DUI/OVI driver
  • Unusual actions


In addition, the Ohio Police officer will be listening for the following clues of possible impairment as he questions the driver:

  • Slurred speech
  • Admission of drinking
  • Inconsistent responses
  • Abusive language by the suspected DUI/OVI driver
  • Unusual statements


Finally, the Officer will try to detect the following scents during the interview that would support a determination the driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Marihuana
  • Cover up odors like gum, mints, breath spray or breath strips
  • Other unusual odors

NHTSA instructs Ohio officers to use a number of interview techniques while the suspected DUI/OVI driver is still in the vehicle. Most of the techniques apply the concept of divided attention, which can be difficult for someone a driver who is under the influence, as the driver is required to concentrate on two or more things at the same time. NHTSA advises that these techniques are not as reliable as the standardized field sobriety testing, however, they can still be useful for obtaining evidence that the suspected Ohio DUI/OVI driver is under the influence.

The questioning techniques are as follows:

  • Asking for two things simultaneously
  • Asking interrupting or distracting questions
  • Asking unusual questions

An example of the first technique stated above is asking the driver to produce both license and registration at the same time. NHTSA advises Ohio officers to be alert for the following clues:

  • Driver forgets to produce both documents
  • Driver produces documents other than the ones requested
  • Driver doesn’t see the license and registration while searching in his wallet
  • Driver fumbles or drops wallet, purse, license or registration
  • Driver is unable to retrieve documents using his fingertips

The second technique stated above, asking interrupting or distracting questions, forces the driver to divide his attention between searching for the license or registration and answering a question. NHTSA gives an example of asking the driver the following question: “Without looking at your watch, what time is it right now?” Officers are advised to be alert for the following clues of impairment:

  • Driver ignores the question and concentrates only on the license or registration search
  • Driver forgets to resume the search after answering the question
  • Driver provides a grossly incorrect answer to the question

The third technique, asking unusual questions, is utilized after the officer has obtained the suspected DUI/OVI driver’s license and registration. In this case, NHTSA advises that the driver may have a difficult time answering an unusual question when he is not expecting it.

NHTSA offers Ohio officers some additional techniques to utilize during this phase of the DUI/OVI investigation that are not considered standardized, but may still indicate some level of impairment. They are:

  • Alphabet Test
  • Count down
  • Finger count

Finally, NHTSA instructs Ohio officers to observe the suspected DUI/OVI driver carefully as he exits the vehicle. In this task, officers are told to look for the following actions or behaviors that may provide evidence of impairment:

  • Angry or unusual reactions
  • Cannot follow instructions
  • Cannot open the door of the car
  • Leaves the vehicle in gear when exiting the vehicle
  • Climbs out of the vehicle, supporting himself with car door
  • Leans against the vehicle
  • Keeps hands on the car for balance

Common Mistakes in Ohio DUI/OVI Investigations

No Ohio DUI/OVI/drinking and driving arrest is perfect and the best Ohio DUI/OVI lawyers knows this. Most Ohio DUI/OVI investigations include a number of witnesses, including police officers and the personnel who collect, store and test chemical samples.  These witnesses are human and they make mistakes. Further, most Ohio DUI/OVI investigations include a breath testing device or other testing equipment that is not always maintained according to current Ohio DUI/OVI regulations.

Do You Want Award-Winning Ohio DUI/OVI Representation?

There are over 1 million laws in the United States. I am a top Ohio DUI/OVI defense lawyer who devotes his entire practice to ONE. Because of my experience and concentrated focus, I know the Ohio DUI/OVI laws better than most attorneys in the state. I am passionate about Ohio DUI/OVI defense and I get results, however, I only accept a limited number of clients. If you’re serious about your case and want a top Ohio DUI/OVI lawyer on your team, call me, the Ohio DUI Dude at 1-844-DUI-DUDE.

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