Sobriety checkpoints have used by law enforcement officials for years to target alleged impaired drivers. Despite the fact that these checkpoints have been deemed to be constitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court, however, some are now calling for an end to checkpoint operations, as they are costly and not effective at nabbing drunk drivers, these parties contend.
Problems with DUI Checkpoints: Why Some Say They Shouldn’t Be Used Anymore
Those who are against the use of DUI checkpoints have specifically pointed out that these checkpoints:
- Cost a lot – In fact, on average, setting up and running just one DUI checkpoint for one evening costs an average of $8,000 to $10,000. In contrast, operating just one roving patrol for one evening costs an average of $300. This means that, in general, the costs of a single DUI checkpoint operation could pay for 26 to 33 roving patrols.
- Don’t typically result in a lot of citations or DUI arrests – Data from across the nation has indicated that, on average, sobriety checkpoints only result in a handful DUI arrests and, at times, only a single arrest for an entire night’s operation.
- Are easy for motorists to avoid – With smartphones and other mobile devices, motorists can alert each other about the presence of DUI checkpoints (or simply download one of the many apps that can alert them to the locations of sobriety checkpoints). This effectively makes it easy for drivers to simply take another route and bypass DUI checkpoints altogether.
Additionally, some civil liberties advocates have expressed concerns about the fact that checkpoints randomly stop motorists without any specific evidence of impairment.
Checkpoint Deterrent Factor Is Critical, Opponents Contend
Attempting to counter these arguments, proponents of DUI checkpoints have argued that, while these checkpoints may not be as effective as other methods at making DUI arrests, they do have a significant deterrent factor, as they remind motorists that law enforcement officials are watching and are ready to arrest drunk drivers.
As this debate continues, it remains to be seen if it will rise to the legislative or judicial level, where authorities may consider banning the use of these checkpoints in the future. As more news regarding this debate and the legality of checkpoints becomes available, we’ll report the latest updates to you here in our blog.
Until then, post your comments and opinions about DUI checkpoints on our Facebook & Google+ pages.
Contact a Broomfield DUI Attorney at The Datz Law Firm
Have you or a loved one been charged with a DUI or any criminal offense? If so, a Broomfield DUI attorney at The Datz Law Firm is ready to provide you with superior defense representation.
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