Arizona is one of 38 states that conduct DUI checkpoints. Some states have found the checkpoints unconstitutional – in conflict with the fourth amendment, which requires probable cause in order to conduct a search or seizure – but Arizona performs the checkpoints routinely.
DUI checkpoints can occur monthly, or more frequently, and are usually set up during the late night or early morning hours of Friday and Saturday, when drunk driving is more likely to occur. In Arizona, these checkpoints may be constitutional, but that doesn’t mean you lose your rights as a citizen.
How Arizona DUI Checkpoints Work
DUI checkpoints are strategically placed stations where police can check for intoxicated drivers. These stations are typically set up near areas where many people are drinking, such as concerts or sporting events.
But they can also be just about anywhere, and there are resources online where drivers can find a list of previously held DUI checkpoints.
At the checkpoints, police officers may stop every vehicle, or decide to pull over cars randomly, say, every fifth vehicle. In either case, they’ll check for signs of intoxication, and if the officer believes them to be present, the driver may be asked to conduct a field sobriety test.
Your Rights at DUI Checkpoints
If and when you’re asked to take a field sobriety test – including a breathalyzer or blood test – you’re not legally required to perform the test. If you decline to take a sobriety test, however, you may be in violation of other laws that will allow the police officer to make an arrest.
In this case, you’ll want to contact your attorney as soon as possible in order to avoid anything that could be used against you during your case.
Getting Help After a DUI Checkpoint Arrest
If you’ve been arrested during a DUI checkpoint, it’s important to know how the process works, and what you can do after your arrest to minimize the impact of your charge.
At JacksonWhite Law, we work with clients all over the Phoenix metro area to reduce their charges, limit their penalties, and make the most of their legal case.
If you need help with a DUI-checkpoint charge, call the East Valley’s premier criminal defense team, led by attorney Jeremy Geigle.
Call our criminal law team at (480) 467-4370 for your free and confidential consultation.