Are DUI Checkpoints Legal?
Cops have authority granted to them by the state, but that doesn’t mean they can do whatever they want. They can’t pull their gun without just cause, they can’t arrest someone on a whim, and they’re supposed to establish probable cause before they make a traffic stop. However, a driving while under the influence (DUI) checkpoint flies in the face of the probable cause rule. Therefore, how are DUI checkpoints legal?
The DUI Checkpoint Debate
You may be surprised to learn that there is a debate on the legality of DUI checkpoints. Some politicians believe that DUI checkpoints undermine the Constitution by allowing police officers to stop someone without probable cause.
However, the other side of the debate would agree with the opposition that the use of DUI checkpoints takes away the rights of Americans, but to them, it’s the greater good.
DUI Checkpoint Rights
Politicians who are pro-DUI checkpoints would argue that it’s not a matter of American rights, but a matter of public safety. They would say DUI checkpoints keep drinkers accountable for their actions, and that the existence of DUI checkpoints scares some people away from drinking and driving.
Therefore, those who are pro-DUI checkpoints believe the benefits outweigh the harm DUI checkpoints pose to Americans’ rights.
States Where DUI Checkpoints are Illegal
While the federal government believes in the use of DUI checkpoints, it doesn’t force state governments to adopt their beliefs.
In fact, DUI checkpoints are illegal in the following states:
- Rhode Island
However, Florida (along with 40 other states) upholds the constitutionality of DUI checkpoints.
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