In Chester County, Pennsylvania, DUIs are among the most common and serious charges prosecuted by the District Attorneys Office. In such cases, prosecutors are forced to seek mandatory jail time in order to avoid the many negative consequences to society that having a DUI can cause. Therefore, prosecutors and courts in Chester County treat DUI offenses of the first, second, or third degree in a very serious way.
If you have been stopped at a DUI checkpoint and are charged with a DUI, it is important to contact a Chester County lawyer as soon as possible so they can assist you in building a strong defense for your case. Due to the nuances and severe treatment of DUI offenses by law enforcement, the prosecutors, and judges in the area, having experienced and local legal representation on your side is a great benefit. Reaching out to an attorney can help mitigate the charges and sentences levied against you.
In Chester County, DUI checkpoints and stops are extremely common. Chester County is a large and rural county made up of everything from cities to small towns. Local law enforcement has a large group of officers assigned to attempt and reduce the number of drivers operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs on the streets on any given day.
The most common stops are DUI checkpoints, which are often rotated. Hundreds of individuals are arrested every six months because of checkpoints and the suspicion of driving under the influence.
Checkpoints are rotated among the most heavily traveled roads throughout the county. Specifically, interstates going through Chester County are often targeted as well as main roads, such as Route 1 and local Route 1. These roads are heavily traveled by individuals, there is often no way around them, and the roads are wide enough so that police can set up a traffic installed pass.
When confronted with a checkpoint, an individual should cooperate fully and always submit to a blood and/or alcohol test. If a person does not do so, an inference of guilt can be made as well as additional license suspensions piled on top of the license suspension received when charged with a DUI.
It is typically not to the benefit of an individual to try to escape a checkpoint stop or refuse to take a breathalyzer test. However, an individual does not need to answer any questions that the police present them without their attorney present.
When an individual is seeking to avoid such a checkpoint, they should understand that most checkpoints occur in areas that are the most heavily trafficked. It is rare to find a checkpoint on a back road, however, it does occur. If a specific event is taking place, such as a county fair, checkpoints are often set up even on county roads. The best way to protect yourself is to not drink alcohol and drive. An individual should always be cautious of areas where checkpoints often occur, and understand that once in a checkpoint everything they do is being recorded and monitored, and they should cooperate fully.