The police in Chester, Montgomery, Philadelphia, Delaware, Lancaster, Berks, and Bucks County are increasingly relying on sobriety checkpoints or roadblocks to catch drivers suspected of DUI.
There are ways to challenge the sobriety checkpoint if you were stopped and arrested for DUI in this manner. Call the Law Offices of Michelle A. Fioravanti at 484-876-1543 or contact us if you were stopped at a checkpoint.
Sobriety Checkpoints for DUIs in Chester, Montgomery, Philadelphia, Delaware, Lancaster, Berks and Bucks County Pennsylvania
A case from the United States Supreme Court established many of the guidelines used in Pennsylvania that govern the operation of sobriety checkpoints. The Supreme Court said that police conducting sobriety checkpoints must use a neutral mathematical formula, such as every third vehicle, to select which drivers and vehicles to stop. The purpose of this guideline is to reduce the possibility of stopping drivers based solely on appearance. The Court also established that sobriety checkpoints must ensure the safety of both drivers and police, be highly visible, and minimize the amount of time each driver is stopped at the checkpoint.
Criteria for Pennsylvania DUI Roadblocks
The Supreme Court’s decision balanced the rights of individuals against society’s need to prevent dimpaired driving. In Pennsylvania a sobriety checkpoint must meet the following 5 criteria:
- Vehicle stops must be brief and must not entail a physical search
- There must be sufficient warning to the existence of the checkpoint
- The decision to conduct a checkpoint, as well as the decision as to time and place for the checkpoint, must be subject to prior administrative approval
- The choice of time and place for the checkpoint must be based on local experience as to where and when intoxicated drivers are likely to be traveling
- The decision as to which vehicles to stop at the checkpoint must be established by administratively pre-fixed, objective standards, and must not be left to the unfettered discretion of law enforcement officers at the scene.
Your DUI charges can be challenged if the police didn’t follow the this criteria.
The only way to know if the police properly set up the DUI roadblock or sobriety checkpoint is to make an appointment with an experienced Pennsylvania DUI lawyer. Call the Law Offices of Michelle A. Fioravanti at 484-876-1543 or contact us for a free initial consultation to learn more DUI roadblocks or sobriety checkpoints. As your Pennsylvania DUI criminal defense lawyer, we will provide experienced and aggressive representation you can trust. Your DUI case is important, and it will receive the personal attention it deserves.