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Former FBI Agent Explains What You Should Do if You Are Stopped by the Police

7:20 PM, May 10, 2012   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- If you see flashing blue lights in your rear view mirror, what should you do?

After a recent police shooting during a traffic stop, First Coast News spoke with retired FBI Agent Ron Wirth on Thursday to find out how you should handle being stopped by the police.

Wirth said the first thing you should do are to turn off the radio and turn the air conditioning or fan down to the lowest setting, or just turn it off. This makes it easier to hear the officer's instructions. Since traffic could cause background noise, eliminating as much excessive sound as possible can be helpful.

Second, you should put down the vehicle's windows. This is especially true if you have tinted windows. This allows the officer to see who is in the vehicle and what is going on inside the vehicle.

If you are stopped at night, turn on the lights inside the vehicle.  Turning on the lights will also make it easier to see who is inside the vehicle and how many people there are inside. This will also make it easier to see inside the vehicle if your windows are tinted.

Keep both your hands on the steering wheel, Wirth said. The officer will be able to see both your hands. The police officer may ask you to also place your hands outside the vehicle.

Wirth said to only get out of your vehicle if the officer instructs you to do so. And if they do, the you should open your car door with the outside handle and not the inside one.

If someone is asleep in the backseat or is laying down, Wirth said to have them sit up.

If you have a firearm in the car, Wirth said you should tell the officer. If you have a concealed weapons permit, the officer may ask you to show the license.

First Coast News

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