What to do if a police officer stops you...

Stop your vehicle as far out of the lane of traffic as possible. Make sure you turn your flashers on, and motion to the officer that you are going to comply.

Stay in your vehicle, and turn on the interior light. Good lighting assists good communication. Relax and remain in your vehicle. If you leave the vehicle, you subject yourself and the officer to the dangers of traffic.

Keep your hands in view, preferably on the steering wheel. Wait for the officer to request your license, registration and proof of insurance.

Police officers are trained to ask for identification first and provide and explanation second. First provide the proper documentation. Then, give the officer a chance to explain the reason you were stopped. Providing your documentation will simplify and speed the process. Remember, most often the officer is in uniform with the name tag displayed. You have the advantage of knowing with whom you are dealing. Extend the courtesy by providing the requested identification without argument.

If you do not agree with the citation, or the officer’s demeanor, do not argue at the scene. All citizens have the right to question their citation before a clerk magistrate. Every police department has an internal affairs system in place to investigate citizen complaints.