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How do the police choose who to stop at a DUI checkpoint?

On Behalf of | Jul 6, 2022 | Drunk Driving

The police often use DUI checkpoints to catch drunk drivers. Public holidays such as the Fourth of July weekend, when many people tend to consume alcohol, typically see various checkpoints in place.

If the police do not adhere to all the regulations when setting up or operating these roadblocks, it may give you a way to challenge any charges you face as a result of being stopped at one.

One crucial aspect is that the checkpoints need to be non-discriminatory

Statistics show that the police are more likely to stop some people than others, be it when driving or on the street.

For example, one study found that a black driver was 20% more likely to be pulled over when driving than a white one. Hispanic drivers also faced a higher than average stop rate.

The police need to use a system for stopping people at DUI checkpoints that makes it random to reduce the chance of discrimination.  For instance, they pull over every third car, every blue vehicle or the first car that passes in every new five-minute period. 

If you believe that the police were letting people who did not look like you through and stopping those who did, you could question whether they had a fair system. It could be that you were car number 20, and they stopped every twentieth car, or that they singled you out because of your race, cultural clothing, gender, sexuality, etc.

Where they site the roadblock could also give cause to claim discrimination. For instance, if they put it right outside the only gay bar in town or put five checkpoints in areas with mainly black residents and none in the areas primarily populated by whites. If a DUI ruined your holiday weekend, seek legal help to look for ways to limit any further harm it does.