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Are Sobriety Checkpoints Legal?

Can police use sobriety checkpoints to stop and check to see if the drivers may be driving under the influence of alcohol? In other words, are sobriety checkpoints legal?


The United States Supreme Court held that sobriety checkpoints are valid. In their decision, the Court found that the intrusion and inconvenience to individuals who are stopped is outweighed by the government’s interest in restricting drunk driving. Ohio courts determined that there are four factors to determining the legality of a sobriety checkpoint: (1) a checkpoint location must be selected for its safety and visibility to oncoming motorists; (2) adequate advance warning signs illuminated at night, must timely inform approaching motorists of the nature of the impending intrusion; (3) uniformed officers and official vehicles must be in sufficient quantity and visibility to show the police power of the community; and (4) policy-making administrative officers must make a pre-determination of the roadblock location, time, and procedures to be employed, according to carefully formulated standards and neutral criteria.


Once stopped at a sobriety checkpoint, the officer determines if the driver is suspected of operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If there is no suspicion of OVI or other legal wrongdoing, the driver is permitted to leave. If there is suspicion of DUI, the officer detains the driver and conducts field sobriety testing and breath testing. After such tests, the driver may be arrested if there is probable cause to believe the driver is under the influence.


To read more on DUI, click on any of the following links to my other articles related to DUI: Traffic stops cannot be extended for a drug dog sniff; Can police pull you over based on a tip from another driver; Ohio changes to OVI laws. My hard work has resulted in successful results for many of my clients, including the results shown in the case highlights section. This success is reflected in the following links to my reviews and work: Daniel Gigiano ratings; Working with Daniel Gigiano; Daniel Gigiano reviews; Daniel Gigiano; Daniel Gigiano work results.


Attorney Gigiano is a Medina drunk driving attorney in Wadsworth. His positive work is reflected in the client reviews for Daniel Gigiano, reviews in websites, and reflections of his work. If you have questions about this or other questions you need answered by a Wooster drunk driving attorney near Orrville, Barberton drunk driving lawyer near Doylestown, Ohio, or a Stark County drunk driving lawyer near Massillon, please call Attorney Daniel F. Gigiano at 330-336-3330.