Legal Question in DUI Law in New Mexico

Can an Albuquerque cop pull you over without probable cause and ask to see your driver's license and insurance without having a reason to do so; such as a broken headlight, taillight, etc. Turned out the cop was fishing for a DWI but the driver hadn't been drinking. The cop was laying in wait down the street from a Christmas party. No reason was ever given for pulling the driver over.

Asked on 12/20/10, 8:03 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Charles Aspinwall Charles S. Aspinwall, J.D., LLC
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The officer is required to have a reason to effect a traffic stop. It can be one of any number of reasons such as an expired plate, a driving violation, an obstructed windshield - something to give a valid reason for the stop. There can be no valid arrest for DWI without such prior reason. A stop to see if someone is DWI is also invalid, but there is probably not much you can do about it except file a complaint with APD.

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12/26/10, 10:34 am

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