It’s New Year’s Eve, and you just finished a five-club bar crawl. As you’re the designated driver for the night, you help everyone put on their seat belts and head towards home. Unfortunately, you turn a corner to find a DUI checkpoint up ahead. You know you’ll pass all the tests, but you’re frustrated about the inconvenience. As a result, you think about the legality of DUI checkpoints. Can police just ask you to get out of your car and make you take a breathalyzer? How can police stop you at a DUI checkpoint when they regularly can’t stop you without probable cause? These are great questions, and the reality is that police must follow several legal procedures while working DUI checkpoints.
Laws Police Must Follow at Denver DUI Checkpoints
The following are some of the laws Denver cops must follow when conducting a sobriety checkpoint as stated by the Colorado Department of Transportation:
- Police must conduct checkpoints with a minimal amount of intrusion or inconvenience to motorists;
- Police must ensure the safety of both the general public and other law officers;
- Police must have a method for selecting motorists to be contacted (for example, check every third vehicle);
- Police must move vehicles from traffic when conducting further investigations;
- Police must announce the checkpoint to proper media outlets before it’s conducted;
- Police departments must reasonably staff and supervise a checkpoint;
- Police must setup checkpoint warning signs for approaching motorists.
If police fail to comply with some of these guidelines, it could make the checkpoint (and its findings) illegal. It is important to note that regarding defining an illegal checkpoint, some guidelines hold more significance than others.
If you or a loved one are charged with a DUI at a checkpoint, you should contact a criminal defense attorney immediately. The right defense can help you fight for your rights in a court of law!
Call (720) 548-2990 now for a free consultation for your case!