Police officers often set up DUI checkpoints to make sure that they can more easily catch those who are intoxicated after a special event. Random checkpoints might also be set up as a way to curb drunk driving. If you find yourself at a DUI checkpoint, it's helpful to know what to expect.
Understanding a DUI Checkpoint
The DUI checkpoint is legal and the police officer has the right to require that you perform a chemical sobriety test. Many motorists will not be tested because the police officer does not believe that the driver is intoxicated. The DUI checkpoint cannot be set up to catch a specific individual. Also, the DUI checkpoint can last for as long as the police wish for it to last.
Traveling Through a DUI Checkpoint
If you see a checkpoint, do not turn around. This will look suspicious and it will be more likely that the police will believe that you're doing something illegal. Also, to avoid a checkpoint, you may be forced to perform an illegal U-turn.
The vehicles will be arranged in a line so they can pass through and ask each motorist questions. The police officers will look for warning signs of intoxication and they will ask you if you have been drinking. You may be required to provide your driver's license and other forms of documentation.
Knowing Your Rights
The officer may ask to search your vehicle, but they cannot search your vehicle without probable cause. Fortunately, at a checkpoint, if the officer does not believe that you are intoxicated, they will likely want the encounter to end as quickly as possible so you do not hold up the checkpoint. Do not volunteer information because this may be used against you later on. For example, there is no reason to state that you have had a drink.
Receiving a DUI
If you receive a DUI after traveling through a checkpoint, you will want to contact a DUI attorney as soon as possible. Receiving a DUI on your record can have serious consequences. For example, you may not only be forced to spend time in jail and pay a fine but you may also lose your license and may be required to take courses to have your license reinstated. However, there are many ways that you may be able to call into question the evidence presented by the arresting officer and you may be able to have your charges dropped or reduced.Share