A DUI Checkpoint is a physical roadblock set up by the police. The purpose of the Checkpoint is to assess if the drivers passing by are intoxicated. If you encounter a Checkpoint, you will be stopped and asked to show your license and registration, during which interaction the police will look for signs of intoxication. In several states, a DUI Checkpoint is illegal and considered unconstitutional. In Florida, however, DUI Checkpoints are legal.
If you encounter a DUI Checkpoint while driving in Florida, it is the best practice to follow the instructions. You will likely see the Checkpoint before you reach the front of it. While you are allowed to make legal maneuvers to take another route, it will arouse suspicion and may result in a police car following you. If you make any illegal traffic maneuvers to avoid the stop, or attempt to drive through it without stopping, you will almost certainly be chased by a police officer.
If you are stopped at a DUI Checkpoint, you should try to have your documentation ready and remain as calm as possible. Police officers at these stops are looking for any suspicious signs as an opportunity to arrest you. Police officers are also legally allowed to lie to you in Florida, which can complicate these interactions. It is important to behave as politely, calmly, and clearly as you can when speaking to law enforcement.
If the police suspect you of being intoxicated after speaking to you, they may ask you to perform field sobriety tests. These are physical exercises which are intended to illustrate your sobriety. However, there is no guarantee that a person could pass these tests completely sober. The police may also ask you to perform a chemical test, using your breath or blood to test intoxication. Due to Florida’s implied consent law, you have legally consented to these tests just by driving a vehicle.
There is a lot that can go wrong at a DUI Checkpoint, even totally separated from intoxication. If you get arrested, know that you have the right to an attorney. At your initial stop, you technically have the right to provide documentation in silence and not speak to the police, citing your right to an attorney if charged. This approach may be considered legally sound but is dangerous to enact in person. The best way to behave is calmly and clearly, and hopefully everything will go fine.
If you are arrested at a DUI Checkpoint in Florida, you need the best attorney possible to defend you. An attorney can argue your case in court and help protect your rights while dealing with the police. The Camadeco Law Firm has experience in Criminal Defense, and we are ready to fight for the accused. Contact us today if you have been arrested or mistreated. We are unyielding defenders of your rights.