August 26, 2011 By Wallin & Klarich

Sobriety checkpoints are temporary roadblocks on public streets or roadways designed to snare drunk drivers and cite others for violations of the CA Vehicle Code. The courts have established strict guidelines to govern the operation of sobriety checkpoints. Anyone arrested for DUI at a sobriety checkpoint should contact an experienced CA drunk driving attorney to determine whether the checkpoint was operated according to these guidelines.

Sobriety checkpoints must be established under specific guidelines, as mandated by the California Supreme Court in the precedent-setting Ingersoll vs. Palmer case. A sobriety checkpoint must be announced to the public in advance and set up by command law enforcement officers, not officers in the field. Vehicles must be selected using a neutral mathematical formula, and the checkpoints must be maintained safely for both police and motorists, have high visibility, and minimize the average time each motorist is detained.

Each motorist who has been stopped should be detained only long enough for the officer to question the driver briefly and to look for signs of intoxication, such as alcohol on the breath, slurred speech, and glassy or bloodshot eyes. If the driver does not display signs of impairment, he or she should be permitted to drive on without further delay. If the officer does observe signs of impairment, the driver may be directed to a separate area for a field sobriety test. At that point, further investigation must be based on probable cause, and general principles of detention and arrest would apply.

If you or a loved one have been accused or charged with DUI in Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino, Riverside, or Ventura county it is very important that you speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately, like the attorneys at Wallin & Klarich. We have over 30 years of experienced handling this type of matters and can assist you in obtaining the best possible result. Call the law firm of Wallin& Klarich today at, (888) 749-0034 to speak to an experienced Los Angeles criminal defense attorney about your case.

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