Sobriety checkpoints, commonly known as DUI checkpoints, are legal in both Kansas and Missouri. Police use these checkpoints to make random stops that are unconnected to any individual suspicions of illegal activity. Rather, police use DUI checkpoints to attempt to catch any suspicious activity or drivers who might be inebriated. Understanding your rights during DUI checkpoints is important so that you can protect your rights and avoid getting a wrongful DUI.
DUI Checkpoints in the Kansas City Area
Some may wonder how DUI checkpoints can be legal, as police are required to have probable cause before stopping and searching an individual. However, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 1990 that these checkpoints met the standard of “reasonable search and seizure” because the government has the responsibility to reduce drunk driving for public safety. This ruling is also supported by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which reported that sobriety checkpoints reduce crashes related to a DUI by 9%.
There are some limits on the legality of DUI checkpoints, however. For example, police must make public in advance the location and time of DUI checkpoints so that individuals have the opportunity to see if a road they plan on taking will have a checkpoint. States also have the right to individually ban DUI checkpoints. While 12 states have outlawed these checkpoints, Kansas and Missouri have upheld them as legal.
If you wish to avoid DUI checkpoints altogether, that is entirely possible by diligently checking websites like duiblock.com for Kansas and for Missouri to be sure to avoid roads where a checkpoint is taking place. If you are stopped in a DUI checkpoint, most likely the police officer will perform a quick interview and ask to see your license, registration, and insurance. However, if the police officer finds reason to suspect that you have been drinking, they will ask you to perform a sobriety test. While breathalyzer tests can be inaccurate, they are a common onsite sobriety test that the police officer may want you to take.
Call a DUI Lawyer
If the officer decides to charge you with a DUI, call a DUI lawyer as soon as possible to help gather evidence and protect your rights to get the best possible outcome for your case. Daniel C. Miller is an experienced DUI lawyer in the Kansas City area and will work diligently on your case. Call (816) 875-0470 in Missouri and (913) 624-9646 in Kansas.