Yes, sobriety checkpoints are permitted in Arizona. These checkpoints, also called roadblocks, are police traffic stops that are not tied to any specific suspicious activity.
Wait, you might ask, don’t police officers need to have probable cause before stopping someone? Yes, probable cause is required for a traffic stop, but the US Supreme Court has ruled that the dangers of drunk driving outweigh the degree of intrusion of sobriety checkpoints, and therefore they are an exception to the search and seizure provisions of the US Constitution.
What to do if you’re stopped at a DUI checkpoint
First things first – stay calm. Being able to conduct yourself in a calm, cool, and collected manner will help you get through this with minimal issues. You will be asked to produce your driver’s license and registration. This is a lawful request and you are required to provide this information.
You should know when the police are asking you for your ID and registration they are also noting how you and your passengers are acting. They are observing your attitude, behavior, response, and your ability to answer questions. Don’t joke around, don’t talk too much, and remain respectful at all times.
If the police officer asks you to step out of your vehicle or pulls you out of line to further question you, you must comply. Failure to comply with their instructions will result in other charges, such as disorderly conduct. You can politely refuse to perform field sobriety tests if asked to do so though.
Remember the best way to handle yourself at a DUI checkpoint, and to avoid a false arrest, is to be prepared.
Tempe DUI Attorney – Kyle T. Green
As a Tempe DUI Attorney, I can help reduce the consequences of a Tempe DUI charge and answer your questions about the status of your driver’s license and case. Call me at 480-331-7568 to schedule a no obligation case review where you can meet me and we can go over specifics as they relate to you and your questions. Next and same day appointments are often available and I look forward to working with you.Back to Blogs