Recognized California DUI criminal defense attorney tweets critical pointers on how to deal with a DUI / Drunk Driving Checkpoint if you drive onto a California DUI Checkpoint and have not first read this Press Release Blog.
California DUI cops search for drunk drivers in these "fish tanks" aka California DUI checkpoints - asking people questions they do NOT have to answer, and asking people to do things they don't have to. California DUI lawyers want to help people with reasonable answers to common questions.
If a California DUI officer contacts you in the checkpoint or asks you to go to secondary for a California DUI assessment, politely roll down your window and perhaps put your hands on the steering wheel.
If a DUI officer asks you if you for anything other than (1) License, (2) Registration, and (3) Insurance, remember you don't have to answer. Just give them the three items and politely wait.
Do not make any statements to the DUI cop.
The million dollar question the DUI officer is likely to ask is, "Have you had anything to drink tonight?"
Remember you are not required to speak to DUI checkpoint / drunk driving officers. Be brave and hold your ground.
DUI Checkpoint cops are trying to collect DUI evidence against you. Please do not give the officer anything other than license, registration and insurance.
"Officer, I understand and respect what you do for a living, but I do not want to answer any of your questions." You do NOT have to answer anything. If the cop insists, give him the name of your DUI criminal defense attorney and his phone number. You know your rights.
The less DUI evidence the cops get at the roadblock, the better for you. If you have alcohol on your breath, you will get arrested anyway. But do not give the DUI checkpoint officer anything to put in that report that she or he can use against you later.
The DUI officer may ask you to perform some acrobatics or gymnastics aka field sobriety tests. Please remember to let him or her know that you do not wish to participate in any tests. You are not required to comply. DUI officers try to give some tests to try to figure out if you are impaired (but mostly just to collect evidence and point out the things you allegedly did wrong).
Drunk driving cops learn how to do these tests, and thereafter forget them, often making up their own series of "tests." Please do not do them. Polite hold the course and continue to say that you do not wish to perform and tests. You have that right.
The DUI cop may ask you to blow into a hand-held, breath test gadget. Unless you are on DUI probation, please do not blow in the little box.
Hand-held breath test gadgets are unreliable, and often "display" falsely elevated numbers which are higher than your true BAC. Do not blow in the little box if the DUI cop wants you to.
Unless you are on probation or under 21 years of age, under the California Vehicle Code, you are NOT required to blow into the little hand-held DUI breath gadget; you are entitled to refuse the little roadside PAS breath test.
But you must provide blood or breath on a large breath test machine per California's implied consent laws; do only 1 - that big breath or blood. But not anything else.