Palm Beach County DUI Checkpoint Tips – How To Protect Your Rights
Police departments from Miami to Palm Beach Gardens are setting up roadside checkpoints tonight to make sure motorists are operating safe vehicles and are not driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Palm Beach Gardens police will conduct their DUI checkpoint along northbound lanes of U.S. 1 from 11 p.m. Friday 3/19 until 2 a.m. in the morning.
The use of roadblocks is fraught with legal issues. The law enforcement agent is actually stopping you and any occupants in the vehicle without probable cause or reasonable suspicion a crime or traffic infraction was committed. This itself can be considered unconstitutional.
Here are some important facts you need to know if you get caught up in a DUI roadside checkpoint:
- A driver can legally avoid a checkpoint location if he or she can do so in a safe and non-careless manner.
- A driver can legally turn into an open business, strip mall location or any other location you have a right to be in prior to the DUI checkpoint.
- A driver can legally avoid a checkpoint by making a proper and legal U-turn or a “K” turn prior to entering the roadblock.
- The guidelines for law enforcement agencies are strict – they must make sure the selection of vehicles that are stopped is in a consistent manner and not random. Every third vehicle is constitutional. Any deviation from these rules – especially when police are given discretion as to what automobiles can be stopped, what automobiles can be checked for drugs and what automobiles can be allowed to pass – is considered unconstitutional.
The best advice is not to drink and drive or be on U.S. 1 in Palm Beach Gardens tonight if you do. But life happens. It helps to know your rights as a U.S. citizen. It helps to know the name of a good Palm Beach County DUI attorney, too.