traffic stop police car polite and cooperative

Polite and Cooperative (Attitude Matters at a Traffic Stop)

If you are stopped by a police officer for any reason, the second most important thing you must do is remain polite and cooperative. (The most important thing, of course, is to not start talking and incriminate yourself!) At the stop, your attitude matters A LOT!

Most likely if you are stopped by the police, you are already late for something, so tensions can be running high. We all also tend to “shoot the messenger” by thinking the officer is the problem. Now, he or she might be; the officers are human after all. You in your car, beside the road, is not the time nor the place for that debate. Save that for your lawyer at a later time.

No one plans for a chat with law enforcement when they get out of bed in the morning, so let’s “boy scout” this thing and plan ahead. Next time you are stopped, commit, for your sake and your driving record and your wallet, to (1) breathe, (2) relax, (3) maybe even smile, and then (4) DO NOT incriminate yourself!

Judges almost always ask the officer in Court, “Was Mr/Mrs. So-and-So polite and cooperative at the scene?” A good answer here can be the difference between a bad result and a better result in Court! Charges are often reduced or dismissed when the driver was polite and cooperative to the officer. You want this advantage in Court. Even at a traffic stop, we have to play well with others.