By: William C. Head, DUI Lawyer Atlanta
DUI checkpoint locations can be set up by police with little advance notice, and no good DUI checkpoint finder exists to give 100% assurance that (after driving alcohol) that there are no “DUI checkpoints near me.” The Waze app is the best DUI checkpoints app, but even that wonderful technology falls short in late night situations, when fewer drivers may be able to alert other motorists. Below are more Georgia DUI checkpoint refusal tips:
Because police set up a “chase” car to go after any vehicle that turns off, or turns around at a DUI check point, you will most likely be required to pull over if you try to not proceed through a sobriety checkpoint.
Georgia DUI checkpoint refusal laws are very clear that a LEGAL maneuver to avoid police checkpoints is legitimate and not the basis of a Fourth Amendment pullover. Police cannot simply base a police pullover of a moving vehicle on a hunch that the departing driver was refusing to stay in line, due to his or her intoxication level.
Positively, yes. But, do not make an abrupt, illegal maneuver on the roadway that gives the officer articulable suspicion to chase down your vehicle and possibly arrest you? Use turn signals, and move slowly and deliberately if you are going to avoid going through DUI check points. You want to have a clear, concise, unbiased witness to what is about to occur, so activate your cell phone video camera.
Before you start moving, try to set up your phone video camera to capture the exact movements you make, and any conversation between you and a police office, in the event you are later accused of trying to evade a roadblock. Although rare in Georgia today, some police departments have intentionally not placed video cameras in their patrol cars, or on their officers’ uniforms or bodies, to assure that no DUI checkpoint refusal video exists.
No. Remain silent. Giving your name and correct address is required, but nothing further. The right to remain silent and do no “act” that may self-incriminate is guaranteed by Paragraph XVI of the Georgia Constitution. No other State in the USA has a better constitutional provision, for protecting citizens’ rights, which allows you to DO NOTHING and SAY NOTHING.
If chased down by a police chase car, follow Mr. Head’s Rule #1, which is to SHUT UP, and give only your name and address. Never admit you WERE intending to evade the police checkpoint. Sobriety checkpoints look very much like an accident scene, and many people seek an alternate route to their destination, to not be delayed. So, this is Step 1.
Step 2 is that you only get out of your vehicle if ordered to do so. This is the first step to proving “seizure” and the officer’s exercise of dominion over you. This implicates both the federal 4th Amendment but also the Georgia Constitution, under Paragraph XIII. If your phone camera is recording, it will capture your conversation, and the officer’s tone of voice, to help your DUI lawyer win your suppression motion in the criminal case, at a later date.
Step 3 is that you NEVER attempt to do a single field sobriety test, or agree for an officer to “check your eyes” or get you to participate in ANY sort of field tests or evaluations. This includes the officer trying to get you to blow into a portable breathalyzer, or follow an object (e.g., a penlight, a pen or a finger) with your eyes.
Politely say, “No, thank you.” Most police officers fail to strictly follow standardized field sobriety test guidelines, so why expose yourself to a non-standardized, flawed field sobriety test?
What if I Get Arrested for DUI?
That is a very real possibility, and the rules about SHUTTING UP pertain all the way through the arrest and booking process. Every word you utter will be claimed to be slurred, or thick-tongued, or some other subjective description.
Because Georgia DUI laws do NOT permit you to call a DUI attorney, you must know that by submitting to a breath test, you have the absolute right to get your own independent blood test, at a hospital or provider of your choosing. But, you must be able to pay for this independent test.
A DUI refusal (of the post-arrest BAC test) can suspend your driver’s license for a FULL YEAR (or your privilege to drive in Georgia for that full year). Plus, since 2006, an officer can also seek a forcible blood draw warrant, and obtain your blood test, even if a DUI refusal has occurred.
Call the Best DUI Lawyers Immediately Following Your DUI Arrest
Drunk driving book author William C. “Bubba” Head, Atlanta DUI lawyer and Board-Certified drunk driving defense expert attorney, has practiced DUI law for 41 years. No one in America is better known for fighting DUI cases. Allow Mr. Head or his law partners (Cory Yager, and ex-cop or Larry Kohn, who has been with Mr. Head since law school over 20 years ago) at our Atlanta law office. We are specialists, can assist you on a DUI first offense, or even a 2nd DUI in GA.
If you need 24-hour lawyers, call us now for immediate legal help. Call our DUI law firm at (404) 567-5515. Our FREE professional criminal case assessment is worth your time and energy. If winning is your objective, call the best DUI lawyer our Georgia DUI law firm today.