Avoid These Mistakes If You Encounter A DUI Checkpoint
If you’ve lived in Colorado very long, you are likely aware of the frequency with which DUI checkpoints are set up around major holidays. If you are concerned about the legality, you can be assured this practice is legal via the state constitution. Thus, it is important that you remain vigilant of the possibility of encountering a DUI checkpoint, especially around holidays associated with drinking, such as New Year’s Eve, Thanksgiving, the 4th of July, etc. If you are lucky enough to find yourself approaching a DUI checkpoint, be aware of what not to do, so you can quickly get through the stop and continue on your merry way.
Avoid Breaking the Law
When approaching a DUI checkpoint, if you would rather not deal with the inconvenience, you may legally drive away and choose another route. Despite this, it is exceedingly important that you do not break traffic laws when attempting to turn around or avoid a DUI checkpoint. Hence, be sure your turns are legal (avoid any illegal U-turns near a DUI checkpoint) to prevent yourself from catching the attention of law enforcement. If you choose to disobey traffic laws when trying to avoid a DUI checkpoint, you will find yourself pulled over for this breach and you will still be subjected to a DUI check. Thus, either go through with the checkpoint or be extremely cautious to obey all laws when backing up to choose another route.
Don’t Divulge Too Much Information
When dealing with a DUI checkpoint it is important that you always think before you speak. One of the first questions the officer will likely ask is if you’ve been drinking. If this happens to you, exercise your right to remain silent. Simply, decline to answer and the police will be hard-pressed to find a reason to detain you. However, if you admit to drinking, you will immediately be pulled over and questioned further. Without an affirmation that you were indeed drinking, it is likely you can avoid being pulled over. Not to mention, since you did not say anything, there will be nothing the officer can use to build a DUI case against you.
Respect Goes A Long Way
Being disrespectful to the police is just asking for trouble. Always be polite, respectful, and courteous to all officers. Avoid making snide remarks, backtalking, or other rude comments about being stopped at a checkpoint. While it may be inconvenient, it is always best to remain friendly with officers running the checkpoint. If an officer has an attitude, take the high road and continue to be respectful anyhow. The concept is simple, drivers that are belligerent and rude will immediately appear that they have something to hide or are guilty. When all eyes are on you, it is more likely the officer(s) may be able to find something to charge you with. Avoid having the spotlight put on you by taking care to always be respectful, no matter what.
If you have been stopped at a DUI checkpoint and were charged with DUI, make your next call to an experienced DUI defense attorney. Never underestimate the impact of competent legal representation on the outcome of your case!