Sobriety Checkpoints in California
DUI checkpoints are a tool commonly utilized, but far from perfect, for identifying and arresting of impaired drivers in Orange County, Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino and throughout California. Sobriety checkpoints in effect today were originally created because of the success of roadside safety checks and license inspections. Despite this fact, law enforcement officers continually defend the use of sobriety checkpoints as necessary for public safety.
In California, law enforcement agents run approximately 2,500+ annual checkpoints. This is especially apparent during the holiday season. This is why understanding your legal rights is very important when entering a DUI or sobriety checkpoint.
Unlawful search and seizure?
Many California citizens are concerned with the legality of our checkpoints because of the increased number of arrests, citations, and vehicle impounds made at these checkpoints that have nothing to do with driver impairment, intoxication, or driving under the influence. More and more drivers are being arrested for license infractions rather than DUI at these sobriety checkpoints.
At the Law Offices of Chad Maddox we will help you determine if the sobriety checkpoint was lawful and if police had the right to arrest you.
DUI Checkpoint Regulations
Focusing on California, you need to know the law when it comes to DUI checkpoints. Below are some legal statutes:
- An announcement of when the sobriety checkpoint will be implemented is required. Law enforcement officials must tell the general public at some time before the sobriety checkpoint is running. This is usually done on their website.
- Drivers are legally allowed to choose alternative routes when seeing a DUI checkpoint. A driver may not be forced to enter the checkpoint and may not be pursued if they change directions legally.
- A trained officer or superintendent must be on site to oversee the checkpoint.
- Sobriety checkpoints must emphasize safety. Visibility must not be obscured.
- Sobriety checkpoints have certain procedures and the details of those procedures must be known. For example, how they intend to stop vehicles entering the checkpoint. (1 every 5, 10 cars, etc)
The uncertainty of the legality for sobriety checkpoints leads many states to not conduct them at all. In twelve states total, these checkpoints are not allowed to be run at all because they have been ruled unconstitutional.
Protect Yourself and Your License
Each U.S. State is forced to interpret sobriety checkpoints individually. This means individual laws and regulations are created that can vary from state to state and sometimes even from county to county within the SAME state. This can be extremely confusing and stressful, especially to a person who has been recently arrested for DUI.
Let the Law Offices of Chad Maddox help you navigate through the legal implications of being arrested for DUI at a sobriety checkpoint.
If you’ve been arrested for driving under the influence and are facing a criminal trial, get the help you need from an attorney who has been fighting illegal DUI charges for over 14 years. Mr. Maddox will fight for your driving privilege and do everything possible to overturn your sobriety checkpoint DUI.