DUI Checkpoints in Florida
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The United States began using sobriety checkpoints in the 1980s. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 11 different studies have shown checkpoints reduce alcohol-related crashes by 17% and all crashes by 10%-15%. Because of these results, many states have adopted the practice, including Florida. While some states consider the practice unconstitutional, other states have continued using checkpoints after their constitutionality was upheld by the Supreme Court. Florida conducts random checks around 15–20 times per month.
What Do I Need to Know About DUI Checkpoints?
- Florida law enforcement follows a 3-minute rule, meaning they can’t detain a vehicle for more than 3 minutes, or else the officials must stop diverting all traffic into checkpoint lanes. They then have to select random vehicles for systematic searches.
- Police generally need probable cause to make a traffic stop, but the U.S. Constitution allows DUI checkpoints. The Supreme Court ruled the dangers of drunk driving outweigh the intrusiveness.
- Law enforcement must publicize checkpoints ahead of time. If you see a checkpoint being set up, avoid driving until you’re more sober or take an Uber, Lyft, or cab to your next destination.
- Show your identification to police officers if you’re asked for it.
- Florida has implied consent laws in place, meaning if you’ve been arrested under probable cause then you must comply with a blood, urine, or breath test to determine BAC.
- The officer must tell you that if you refuse to take the test, your license will be suspended and your refusal will be used against you in court.
- You can refuse to take a test, but your license will be suspended for a longer period every time you do refuse at a checkpoint.
- If you are taken to a police station, you have to submit to a blood or breathalyzer test. Ask for your attorney, and submit to the test.
DUI convictions can come with severe penalties and can affect your day-to-day life. Make sure you have the best legal protection possible. Contact one of our Florida DUI attorneys at Musca Law for a free case evaluation. Protect your rights!