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Sobriety Checkpoints

DUI Checkpoint Attorney

In Indiana, sobriety checkpoints ARE LEGAL and do not violate the Indiana Constitution’s prohibition against unreasonable searches and seizures. Indiana is one of 37 states that allow sobriety checkpoints.  Those states that permit sobriety checkpoints have very specific rules for conducting and enforcing them.  Typically, sobriety stops are of a short duration of between thirty (30) seconds to two (2) minutes.  They are set up at temporary, random locations and must not last longer than is reasonably necessary. Checkpoints must be publicized ahead of time. You are able to find out the existence of any sobriety checkpoint by doing a basic internet search.  

There are ways to challenge an arrest based on an encounter with police at a sobriety checkpoint.  The first thing that the court will determine is whether the checkpoint was legal. Courts look at things such as:

  • Why the checkpoint was needed at the location selected;
  • Whether drivers were stopped according to a neutral plan;
  • Whether adequate safety precautions were taken and whether police vehicles and officers were clearly identifiable;
  • The duration of the stop, the intensity of questioning, and degree of intrusion; and
  • Whether the checkpoint was publicized.

In considering the degree of intrusion, courts look at not only the length of detention but also whether the roadblock was avoidable. You are NOT required to drive through a roadblock and may utilize the turn-off provided prior to the actual roadblock.  Generally, a driver who wishes to avoid a sobriety checkpoint may do so, as long as the driver does not engage in any unlawful or dangerous behavior.  The more avoidable a roadblock is, the less it interferes with the liberty of a driver and the more likely it is legal.  

A person detained at a sobriety checkpoint is not in custody and, therefore, police officers are not required to provide Miranda warnings. At a sobriety checkpoint, police may ask for the driver’s license and registration.  Officers may also ask whether the driver has been drinking and generally need not advise the driver of the driver’s Miranda rights.  However, a driver is NOT required to answer the officer’s questions about whether the driver has been drinking.

If you are stopped at a sobriety checkpoint, you are required to provide your:

  • Name,
  • Address and
  • Date of birth OR
  • Your driver’s license.

If you are NOT required to:

  • Answer questions,
  • Submit to Field Sobriety Test or
  • Permit police to search your vehicle.

At Stracci Law Group, there are few things our attorneys relish more than a good legal challenge. Sobriety checkpoint cases provide us with just that type of challenge. We have had a great deal of success in defending these cases over the years and if you would like us to put our skill and experience to work for you, call us today at (219) 525-1000.

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Paul G. Stracci, the leader of our team, defended a murder case only 10 months out of law school and won a complete acquittal. He has since developed a powerful reputation as a devastatingly effective criminal trial attorney.

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Michael Woods is an experienced criminal trial attorney who has handled thousands of cases ranging from simple traffic tickets to complex homicides. A deputy prosecuting attorney for nearly 10 years, Michael knows what makes a case weak or strong, and can give clients an honest and realistic evaluation of their case.

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Maryam Afshar-Stewart, a former prosecutor, has risen rapidly as a criminal defense attorney thanks to her remarkable work ethic and undying commitment to the cause of justice for her clients.

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After gaining misdemeanor and felony experience in the Indianapolis criminal courts, Peter has returned home to northwest Indiana to join the accomplished trial attorneys at Stracci Law Group and further his career as a trial lawyer.


"If you got legal issues I highly recommend this company. They got me out of a jam! With all charges dropped. And reasonably priced."
Cliftin Branch, Criminal Case
"I can actually say that Paul is a GREAT LAWYER!! Takes care of business. He got a very big felony dismissed that was hovering over my life for a couple of years and stopped me from doing many things freely, He also got a Dui Dismissed as well as a few other things! My record is now clean. Thank you Paul Stracci!"
Timmy ShellToe, Criminal Case
"I just want to reach out again to thank you. I’m so incredibly grateful for all your help and hard work. We both are!! My entire family is. I could never say thank you enough. In my head, I knew that he was innocent and never intended for any of this to happen. That he was only defending himself but the fact that they charged him and put him in jail was so terrifying. From the very first time I talked to you over the phone and then came in and met you both, I knew God helped me pick the right attorneys. My son was in the very best hands he could be in. Thank you for also putting up with my constant emailing, I couldn’t help myself. I wanted you to have all of the information I had. I will forever be grateful and I will also definitely be telling anyone I know that needs an attorney to come to your firm. I will tell everyone how amazing you gentlemen are for the rest of my life. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!"
Timmy ShellToe, Criminal Case
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