Like Paul Simon’s song “50 ways to leave your lover,” there are at least fifty ways to tell a police officer that you do not consent to any searches. Make an excuse if you like: “I’m late, for a very important date.” But no excuse is necessary. You should not offer any justification for refusing a search. Be confident and politely insistent. It’s your legal right to be secure from searches and seizures by police unless they have a search warrant or an exception to the warrant requirement.
Dealing with police
What are some potentially effective countermeasures, then? If the window is not open, or open about an inch or so – that is plenty to pass the drivers license and insurance card through, but not enough to expose the odor of alcohol. You can refuse to do lower the window to force the officer to make a forceful command to do so, making it difficult for them to argue you did so voluntarily. When speaking to the police officer through the almost closed window, the driver can avoid eye contact. This prevents the officer from being able to observe the cliché “bloodshot watery eyes” they imagine come only with drinking. It’s a good idea to have the drivers license and insurance card in hand immediately after stopping, well before the police officer walks up to the vehicle to request those. They are in your hands already, which are in plain sight on the steering wheel. If asked “have you been drinking tonight?” you are not required to answer or answer responsively.
There is no statute or law that requires that young person to consent to a search by providing a breath sample simply because they are walking down the street, or found at a house party, with an odor of an alcoholic beverage about them. A young person in this position can simply refuse to consent to such a search.