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Drunk Driving: DUI Checkpoints

According to the State of New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety Office of the Attorney General, a national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign involving criminal justice partners in all 50 states was started in 1999 in an attempt to reduce the number of deaths caused by drunk or impaired drivers. Nevertheless, between 2003 and 2012, nearly 2,000 people were killed in New Jersey as a result of accidents caused by drunk drivers.

New Jersey Sobriety Checkpoints

One way that local law enforcement tries to minimize the number of drunk drivers on New Jersey roads is by using sobriety checkpoints.  A DUI checkpoint, which does not  violate the ban against unreasonable search and seizure as determined by the United States Supreme Court in 1990 in the case of Michigan Dept. of State Police v. Sitz, allows police to stop vehicles to determine if the individual is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. 

If the police believe that an individual is driving while intoxicated, law enforcement can require the administration of a roadside breathalyzer test.  It is believed that such checkpoints act as a:

general deterrent to persons who have knowledge of the operation. Sobriety checkpoints increase the perception of the risk of arrest, if they are adequately publicized and highly visible to the public.”

Steps to Take After a Sobriety Checkpoint

If you are stopped at a DUI checkpoint, it is important to speak to a New Jersey DUI defense lawyer as soon as possible so that the events that occurred remain fresh in your memory.   A lawyer from Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A. will review the specifics of your case and determine if law enforcement followed all of the required guidelines in conducting the sobriety checkpoint such as those established by the Superior Court of New Jersey in the case of State v. Kirk, 202 N.J.Super. 28.  Those guidelines include:

command supervisory siting and control of check points, careful procedures for moving check points, warning to motorists to allay fears of the traveler, safety of motorists, sufficient staffing to prevent undue inconvenience to motorists, and selection of sites and times designed to benefit the overall effort to cope with drunken driving.”

Your attorney will also determine if any of the evidence collected at the DUI checkpoint can be suppressed under New Jersey law.

Contact a New Jersey DUI Defense Lawyer With Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A. for Help With Building a DUI Defense

Even sober drivers are stopped at statewide DUI checkpoints.  If you or a family member are stopped and cited for a DUI traffic offense even though you were not driving under the influence, it is critical to speak to a DUI defense lawyer at Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A. as soon as possible. Contact our office today to discuss the specifics of your case and our team of attorneys will guide you through every step of the process starting with taking all of the steps possible to try and have the case against you dismissed.

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