Each year, officers in the Traffic Unit of the San Francisco Police Department participate in several different DUI sobriety checkpoints throughout the City of San Francisco and the surrounding parts of the Bay Area. The funding for these DUI sobriety checkpoints is provided through a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
For anyone arrested in a DUI sobriety checkpoint, a criminal defense attorney can file and litigate a motion to suppress the evidence because the initial stop was illegal and unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution.
DUI checkpoint cases are more difficult for the prosecutor because they must prove that the entire checkpoint was set up properly, used a proper operational plan, and was executed in accordance with the operational plan. Any deviation can result in all evidence from every stop in the entire checkpoint being suppress or excluded.
Call the criminal defense attorneys at Ticket Crushers to discuss your traffic stop in a DUI sobriety checkpoint and the best ways to fight the case. Call 1 (866) 842-5384 today to discuss the case.
The Typical DUI Checkpoint in San Francisco, CA
DUI sobriety checkpoints are often conducted within the city limits of San Francisco, CA, between the hours of 7 p.m. and 3 a.m., and usually on a Friday or Saturday night. Many of the checkpoints are scheduled on holiday weekends or on New Year’s Eve each year.
The DUI Checkpoints are supposed to be placed in locations based on collision statistics and frequency of DUI arrests in order to afford the greatest opportunity to deter drunk and drugged driving. The location for each checkpoint should be chosen with safety considerations for the officers and the public in mind.
In support of the checkpoints, the San Francisco Police Department claims that the checkpoints create a deterrent effect to reduce the number of persons killed and injured in crashes involving alcohol or drugs. The police department in San Francisco will point to research showing that crashes involving an impaired driver can be reduced by up to 20 percent when well-publicized sobriety checkpoints and proactive DUI patrols are conducted routinely.
During the DUI checkpoints, officers with the San Francisco Police Department look for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment when officers check drivers for proper licensing. The checkpoints are supposed to only delay motorists momentarily.
Statistics and Studies in California DUI Checkpoint Cases
The San Francisco Police Department’s Traffic Unit uses specially trained officers to evaluate people suspected of drug-impaired driving, including driving under the influence of marijuana or a combination of alcohol and marijuana. The police department points to recent statistics which reveal that 30 percent of drivers in fatal crashes had one or more drugs in their systems.
A recent study of active drivers showed more tested positive for drugs that may impair driving (14 percent) than did for alcohol (7.3 percent). Of the drugs, marijuana was most prevalent, at 7.4 percent, slightly more than alcohol. Of course, the study did not recognize that marijuana stays in the system long after any impairment has ceased.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) claims that checkpoints have provided the most effective documented results of any of the DUI enforcement strategies, while also yielding considerable cost savings of $6 for every $1 spent. Additionally, law enforcement officers in California claim that nearly 90 percent of California drivers approve of DUI checkpoints.
Finding a San Francisco DUI Defense Attorney for Checkpoints
If you were arrested for DUI or another offense at a DUI checkpoint conducted in San Francisco, CA, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Ticket Crushers. We represent clients charged with a first DUI or a second DUI or subsequent offense.
Whether the case involves a breath test or blood test or a refusal to submit to testing, our DUI Defense lawyers in San Francisco, CA, can help you fight the charges. Call us to find out more about fighting the administrative (APS) suspension.
Call 1 (866) 842-5384 for a free consultation today.