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Can sucking on a penny help you avoid DUI charges?

On Behalf of | Sep 12, 2022 | DUI |

Memphis has some excellent places to enjoy dinner and drinks. If you consume a few beers or a couple of cocktails, though, you should think twice before driving home. After all, both Tennessee and Mississippi have some tough penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol.

If you press your luck, you might find yourself sitting beside the road with flashing lights in your rearview mirror. As part of the DUI stop, an officer is likely to ask you to breathe into a device that measures your blood alcohol concentration. Indeed, according to the Mississippi Bar Association, you have already consented to breath testing simply by driving on the state’s roads.

Do not fall victim to an urban legend

There are many urban legends about DUI breath testing. A popular one says that sucking on a penny interferes with the breath test. This is not true, however. Put simply, putting a penny into your mouth before taking a DUI breath test has no effect on the device’s readings. It does, though, make you look like you are trying to outsmart the police.

Exercise your legal rights

You have a fundamental right not to incriminate yourself, so you probably want to think carefully about what you choose to tell officers during your DUI stop. While you should not lie, you can keep from making matters worse by not answering certain questions.

You also can refuse to perform a roadside sobriety test or even a DUI breath test, although there are likely to be consequences for doing so. Ultimately, even though you probably cannot fool a DUI breath test, you can defend yourself aggressively against any charges you are facing after a stop.