Tupelo, MS- Drunken driving is still considered a major safety issue on the roads in Mississippi and the U.S. as whole. Patrols are a very effective way to take drunken drivers off the road, but police efforts to curtail drunken and drugged driving don’t end with patrols, law enforcement often relies on sobriety checkpoints to catch impaired drivers.  A past Centers for Disease Control study found that sobriety checkpoints can prevent up to 20 percent of alcohol-related traffic accidents.

There has been a consternation about whether sobriety checkpoints are actually legal. In 1990, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that sobriety checkpoints are legal and only 12 states have banned the practice. Mississippi is not one, so motorists in the state will likely run across a sobriety check point at some point in their lives.

State law, however, requires police to inform the public when and where a sobriety checkpoint will be set up. This website: http://www.roadblock.org/roadblocks/Mississippi/ will tell motorists the location and time they might encounter a road block.

Drivers who encounter a sobriety checkpoint or roadblock will be stopped and interviewed by police to determine if they are intoxicated. Ann officer will look at your driver’s license and make certain you are sober and legal to drive. If they suspect a driver is intoxicated, police can detain a motorist and ask them to take a breathalyzer of chemical test.

If you are at a sobriety checkpoint and refuse a chemical or breathalyzer test, you will likely be charged with refusal which will have immediate consequences. Drivers in Mississippi who have been charged with a DUI face serious consequences.

While some groups, such as the American Beverage Institute, have been highly critical of sobriety checkpoints, typically questioning their effectiveness, the practice isn’t going anywhere. Your best bet is to cooperate with police if you are stopped at a checkpoint. Show them your driver’s license and produce any other documents police ask for and answer their questions. Things will go much better for you if you cooperate with police even if you are going to be charged with a DUI.

Whether or not you agree with sobriety checkpoints, police will still charge thousands for driving under the influence in Mississippi. And no matter where a person is stopped and charged, the consequences will be the same.

A first-time DUI charge in Mississippi carries a possible penalty of 48 hours in jail, 90-day suspension of your driver’s license and costly fines. A DUI conviction will also stay on a person’s record for at least five years. A conviction will also affect a person’s job and their future career prospects.

If you have been stopped at a DUI checkpoint and now face a DUI charge, USAttorneys suggests you speak with a DUI attorney near them in Tupelo to discuss their charges. A strong defense will give you the chance avoid a DUI conviction or get your penalties reduced. Take your DUI charges seriously and retain and DUI defense attorney immediately to work in your case.

If you are in Tupelo, we highly recommend the Bryson Law Firm to work on your case and give you a chance to negate the seriousness of your DUI.