The state of South Carolina has established strict rules and regulations to promote road safety and decrease the number of accidents and damages caused by alcohol and substance abuse. They’ve set up checkpoints where suspects are stopped and tests are conducted.
The accused might be arrested and their license suspended for months based on the findings of those tests. Suspects who are unaware of their drunk driving checkpoint rights may wind up complicating the situation and paying additional penalties. With so much at stake, it’s critical that people are informed about the rights they can exercise at these checkpoints.
You must remain calm and assert your rights if you are arrested for a DUI at a drunk driving checkpoint in South Carolina. The first thing you can do is dispute the checkpoint’s legality. Law enforcement must provide sufficient evidence that the checkpoint where the arrest was made complied with constitutional requirements. The law enforcement personnel will be unable to proceed unless a strong justification for the drunk driving checkpoint is presented.
How Do You Know If The Drunk Driving Checkpoints Are Legal?
- The court must verify that the checkpoint does not infringe on the public’s privacy.
- The Supreme Court of the United States has ruled that checkpoints can be constructed legitimately at recognized and established checkpoints.
- The checkpoints are subject to time and investigation constraints, which means they must be completed within a specified time frame and the investigation is limited in its scope.
Drunk Driving Checkpoint Rights
Individuals have the right under the Constitution to refuse to comply with unverified searches by law enforcement. In truth, law enforcement personnel have a legal obligation to provide the validity of the seizure to the person they stop at checkpoints.
If you are arrested at an unregistered checkpoint, the evidence seized at that checkpoint is invalid and cannot be presented in court.
The Right to Remain Silent:
At a drunk driving checkpoint, law enforcement officers typically ask a few questions, request identification and documents, and administer tests. Those who are unaware of their rights frequently cooperate with officers and provide information under the assumption that they are obligated to do so. That is not the case, however.
Individuals are not obligated to respond to any of these questions. They have the option of rolling down their windows and refusing to speak with the officers. They can hand over a card that informs officials that they want to exercise their constitutional rights. Before making any statement, individuals have the right to consult with an attorney.
Refusing to Take Part in the Tests:
While administering tests to people suspected of driving under the influence, officers frequently overlook their responsibility to inform them of their rights. Tests such as field sobriety tests and others are used to see if drivers are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
These tests’ scores and findings determine the amount of intoxication and can be used as evidence in court. Having said that, citizens are under no obligation to follow the authorities’ orders and submit to the tests.
These exams are given by the officers in order to prove the legitimacy of their claim in court. If a person refuses to take the test, it does not necessarily indicate that they will be arrested right away. If the suspect is not impaired, the results of the test can persuade the officer that the person is truly sober and safe to drive.
Refusal to Submit Breath Samples:
The breath tests used to detect the BAC levels of suspects are well-known. Suspects are asked to cooperate with chemical testing, which might include breath, blood, and urine samples. If the case is still being built, the suspect may first refuse to take a breath test.
However, if a case has been established and proof of the suspect driving under the influence has been gathered, the law requires these offenders to submit to a breath test to determine their blood alcohol concentration (BAC). Refusing to do so may aggravate the situation and result in the payment of additional fees. Offenders will be expected to pay not only the charges for a DUI offense but also the additional fees assessed for causing a scene or disrespecting law enforcement personnel.
Call the Bateman Law Firm For Legal Representation:
As mentioned above, South Carolina has enacted tough legislation to ensure road safety and protect innocent victims. DUI is a serious offense, and individuals who are arrested for a DUI case will face a lot of consequences. A DUI arrest can result in your license being suspended for months, as well as cause problems at school, college, or in your career. It is essential to get legal counsel since there is so much potential for harm.
When you contact a lawyer, they can help you in filing and establishing a criminal defense, which may involve questioning if the individual’s rights were infringed during a DUI checkpoint. To learn more about drunk driving checkpoint rights in South Carolina, contact us today.