Holiday DWI Checkpoints to be Conducted in Sussex County
DUI Checkpoints Held in Sussex County NJ Over the Holidays
Vernon Among Towns Conducting DWI Sobriety Checkpoints
If you plan on driving in Sussex County over the holidays you may see some DWI/DUI sobriety checkpoints being conducted by police.
Police will be stopping vehicles to determine if any drivers are impaired based on the consumption of alcohol or drugs. DWI checkpoints are legal in New Jersey under State v. Moskal as long as certain criteria are met.
According to the patch article, 129 towns in New Jersey will be conducting checkpoints and enhancing their DWI patrols between now and the end of the year. For example, Vernon was given a $5,500 grant to conduct a DWI checkpoint in Sussex County.
“Law enforcement officials from throughout New Jersey will be cracking down on drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs as part of the annual end-of-year “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” statewide campaign.”
In order for the DWI checkpoint to be constitutionally valid in New Jersey, the police must show historical statistical data that there are a number of DWI arrests in that area which justifies the need to conduct a DWI checkpoint. They also must provide notice to the public of the checkpoint being conducted. They typically do so by posting the information on the checkpoint online and in local newspapers. However, they do not have to provide the location of the checkpoint as they suspect any drunk drivers may try to avoid that particular area then. All they must do is provide notice that a DWI checkpoint will be conducted in that particular town.
In addition, there must be proper supervision by law enforcement. This typically means a sergeant, lieutenant or captain must be present to oversee the operation and to assist in any arrests, prosecutions. Also, the police officers must conduct the stops at random without using any bias such as race, gender, type of vehicle, etc. They typically do that by choosing every 5th or 6th car for example for the random stop.
If you are stopped at a DWI checkpoint you should comply with the directions of law enforcement and provide your driving credentials (license, registration, insurance). If police suspect that you have been drinking, they will ask you to get out of the vehicle and perform field sobriety tests. Typical signs of impairment include odor of alcohol in the vehicle or on your breath, slow or stuttered speech, failure to answer their questions properly, or open containers of alcohol in the motor vehicle. If you are asked to get out of the vehicle to perform field sobriety tests, you should do so.
Otherwise, they will place you under arrest for DWI and take you to the station to perform a breath test. The typical field sobriety tests that are conducted are the horizontal gaze nystagmus test (known as the “HGN”), the “walk and turn test”, and the “one leg stand test”. These are standardized tests that must be demonstrated for you and the proper instructions must be given by police in order for the tests to be valid.
If you fail the field sobriety tests, you will be arrested and taken to the local police station to provide samples of your breath on the Alcotest 7110 breath testing machine. The legal limit in New Jersey is .08% blood alcohol content (BAC).
Arrested, Charged with DWI in Sussex County? Call Us Now
If you have been arrested after a DWI checkpoint in Sussex County, we can help. Contact our experienced DWI lawyers now for immediate assistance and a free initial consultation.