There were several DUI checkpoints this weekend. There will be several more as we get to the new year. If you drink, you should be careful how much you drink. When you drive, be aware of your surroundings.
If you are driving in between the hours of 6pm and 4am, police are looking to stop those drivers that happen to be driving near a bar. Also, there are several DUI checkpoints.
Can you avoid a checkpoint? You are supposed to be able to. Police are supposed to provide an escape route so that you are not forced to enter the checkpoint. Usually at the escape route there will be a couple of motorcycle cops waiting for someone to use the escape route so they can follow them in the hopes of seeing a vehicle code violation so that they can stop the vehicle using that escape route. I am sure there are times where the police stop for no good reason other than just using the escape route.
Remember, be aware of your surroundings. The police have certain requirements they have to abide by to ensure the DUI checkpoint they set up is valid. If it is not valid, evidence (field sobriety tests, breath test, blood test,… etc.) the police collect could be suppressed and the case gets dismissed.
What are the police supposed to do to make their DUI checkpoints valid? Well, here are a few typical areas where the police may make a mistake. 1) They must publicize where and when they are setting up a DUI checkpoint – either through internet media, radio, tv, or newspaper. 2) They have to post signs letting drivers know that a DUI checkpoint is up ahead. The signs must be posted before a possible escape route. 3) The police must provide the drivers an exit so that they are not forced to enter. 4) Vehicle cannot be stopped randomly while in the checkpoint. There must be a set sequence in which cars are stopped. For example the police can stop every car, every third car, or every fifth car. They officer stopping vehicles cannot have discretion as to which one should be stopped.
Remember what I have been saying. Be aware of your surroundings. Especially this time of year. When I go out around this time of the year, I take a video camera with me. That way I don’t have to rely on just the police officer’s word.
Be careful everyone!