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Beware Of DUI Checkpoints In Orange County And Beyond

As a former public defender and state prosecutor, our firm’s founding attorney has handled many DUI cases involving checkpoints. Our team of defense lawyers fully understands what is needed to defend these cases.

If you were arrested at a DUI checkpoint anywhere in Florida, call The Law Office of Corey I. Cohen & Associates at 407-680-2093 for a free attorney consultation. We can help you determine if your DUI arrest was constitutional or not.

How The Checkpoints Work

DUI checkpoints are a way for police officers to enforce DUI laws against drinking and driving. Most states allow checkpoints with only a few states making the sobriety stations illegal under state law. In Florida, checkpoints are legal and are used by the police on a regular basis.

During a DUI checkpoint, police officers stop every vehicle or a predetermined number of drivers to examine drivers for signs of impairment. These checkpoints help raise public awareness about the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and to arrest people whom they believe are impaired while driving. DUI checkpoints are scheduled on weekends or holidays when most people are on the roads and likely to drink.

Although DUI checkpoints help with enforcement, these stations have caused controversy in many states because of the questionable constitutionality and arrest rates.

Understanding The Challenges Available

Challenges to DUI checkpoints have cited the Fourth Amendment’s protection against searches and seizures that occur without probable cause, to support the argument that DUI checkpoints are unconstitutional.

In 1990, the Supreme Court ruled that the infringement of Fourth Amendment rights caused by DUI checkpoints is overshadowed by the potential public benefit of getting dangerous, impaired drivers off of the road. The court added that DUI checkpoints must follow certain guidelines to be legal:

  • Decisions must be made by supervisors, not arresting officers
  • Vehicles must be stopped only according to a predetermined formula
  • Public and officer safety are most important
  • Locations must be selected by policymakers, based on drunk driving statistics
  • Duration must be limited by concerns of effectiveness and intrusiveness
  • Clearly visible warning lights and signs must be displayed telling drivers that a checkpoint is ahead
  • Drivers must be detained for the minimum amount of time possible
  • Advance publication of the place and time is required to increase its deterrent effect and minimize intrusiveness

Knowledge of these and other details of the law inform our team and allow us to get results for many clients arrested at check points. Call to schedule an appointment with an Orlando lawyer at The Law Office of Corey I. Cohen & Associates at 407-680-2093 or email us today. We’re here to help.

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