There has always been a debate surrounding the legality of using checkpoints as a way to check for drunk drivers. A recent court ruling could impact how these checkpoints work, and it may even affect some types of DUI cases. The ruling specifically pertained to checkpoints involving multiple Pennsylvania police departments, putting a stop to these going forward.
This ruling comes at a time when there are typically more police out monitoring driver behavior around the Fourth of July holiday. At this point, only police departments that have the ability to run checkpoints without outside assistance will be able to do so. The reason for this ruling is because when multiple departments are testing drivers and arresting drivers, it may cause conflict and confusion over jurisdiction. In order to work together on joint DUI checkpoints, there must be a joint agreement between departments and municipalities.
There are some who oppose this ruling, stating that these checkpoints save lives. It can take a few months for departments to draft the necessary agreements to work together on sobriety checkpoints, which means there will be fewer happening in the meantime. However, there is a measure under consideration by the state legislature that, if passed, would give departments the ability to work together sooner.
If a Pennsylvania driver is facing DUI charges after an arrest at a DUI checkpoint, he or she would be wise to seek defense help as soon as possible. These are serious charges that can have a direct impact on a driver’s life. With a strong defense strategy, a person can effectively confront the case against him or her.