The Orange County Sheriff's Department was awarded a large grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety for a yearlong program aimed at reducing deaths and injuries on the roadway. This money will likely be pooled into checkpoints as well as other special enforcement and public awareness efforts.
Orange County holds many DUI checkpoints during October, as Halloween festivities tend to create more driving while intoxicated arrests. According to the NHTSA, from 2007-2011, 52% of all national fatalities occurring on Halloween night involved a drunk driver. Many sites online warn motorists about when these checkpoints will occur and where. Recent checkpoints included:
- Anaheim on October 31
- Huntington Beach on October 26
- Costa Mesa and Lake Forest on October 25
According to research, crashes involving alcohol diminish by 20% when well-publicized checkpoints are conducted. In the words of the Orange County Director of the Office of Traffic Safety, "…Since the tragedy of DUI accounts for nearly one third of traffic fatalities, Orange County needs the high visibility enforcement and public awareness that checkpoints provide." In order for a checkpoint to be legal, however, police officers must follow proper protocol. This includes:
- Supervising officers must make operational decisions
- The criteria where by motorists are stopped must be neutral
- The checkpoint must be reasonably located
- Safety precautions must be taken
- The time and duration of the checkpoint should show good judgment
- Roadblocks should be publically advertised in advance
If a police officer violated your rights or conducted an illegal checkpoint, your DUI charges can be dropped. It is not uncommon for DUI charges to be dismissed for this reason! If you suspect that a DUI checkpoint was not conducted legally and that you have been charged wrongfully, get hard-hitting Attorney Virginia Landry on your side! Our team has achieved a 10.0 rating of Superb by Avvo and you can trust us to represent you effectively; contact us now!