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Miami Valley Law Blog

Monday, September 21, 2020

An Overview of DUI Checkpoints in Ohio

A DUI checkpoint is an area on the road where law enforcement authorities stop drivers and examine them for sobriety. When a police officer suspects that a driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, he or she typically asks the driver to perform a series of field sobriety tests. If the driver complies and fails these tests, he or she will be arrested and charged with a DUI. If you are an Ohio driver, it’s important that you understand your rights regarding DUI checkpoints in Ohio. For additional assistance, please contact an Ohio criminal defense attorney.

The Legality of DUI Checkpoints

The U.S. Supreme Court has held that DUI checkpoints are legal. However, all DUI checkpoints must meet certain requirements, including:

  • Notice: In order for a DUI checkpoint to be legal, the authorities must provide the public with advanced notice of the checkpoint, including its time and location.
  • Warnings: Visible warnings must be in place to alert drivers of a DUI checkpoint.
  • Stops must be based on specific criteria: All stops at a DUI checkpoint must be based on specific criteria, such as predetermined intoxication warning signs or a uniform formula.
  • Minimal invasiveness: The authorities may only detain drivers at a DUI checkpoint in a manner that is minimally invasive.

The DUI Checkpoint Process

When the police stop a driver at a DUI checkpoint, they examine the driver for signs of intoxication. Common signs of intoxication include:

  • Nervousness,
  • Red eyes,
  • Poor posture, and
  • Erratic driving.

If a driver at a DUI checkpoint doesn’t appear intoxicated, the police will allow him or her to pass through the checkpoint. However, if a driver appears to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the police will ask him or her to pull off the road for field sobriety tests and questioning.

Defenses to DUI Checkpoint Arrests

Due to the many DUI checkpoint requirements, police officers often make errors during DUI checkpoint stops. If the police fail to comply with any of the above DUI checkpoint requirements, a person arrested for DUI may challenge the legality of the arrest in court. Therefore, anyone facing charges due to an arrest at a DUI checkpoint should immediately contact an Ohio criminal defense attorney for assistance.

Ohio Criminal Defense Attorneys

If you’re facing a DUI charge in Ohio, you need an experienced Ohio criminal defense attorney on your side. At Cox Keller Lusardi, our experienced and knowledgeable Ohio criminal defense attorneys will work diligently to formulate an effective defense strategy for your case. Our DUI defense attorneys regularly represent residents of the Miami Valley region of Ohio who have been charged with DUI, utilizing our criminal defense knowledge and experience to ensure that all of our clients receive the strongest defense possible. Please contact us as soon as possible to schedule a consultation.


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