“When I was arrested by the Feds on Drug Conspiracy charges, they told me I was facing mandatory life in federal prison without the possibility of parole. I knew that I was innocent, but I was scared . . . so I knew that I would have to find a lawyer who was not afraid of the Feds and would take my case to trial. I chose Greg Robey because he is a fighter. After over 2 weeks in a federal jury trial, I was found Not Guilty of all charges. My family and I am forever grateful to Mr. Robey.” -L.B., Mansfield, Ohio
Over one weekend in early September, three Ohio law enforcement agencies teamed up to organize a DUI checkpoint in Norwalk. The effort was part of a larger campaign aimed at targeting drunk driving on Ohio roads and highways.
The Norwalk Police Department, the state’s Investigative Unit and the State Highway Patrol organized the checkpoint. Set up on U.S. 250, authorities stopped some 510 vehicles to question drivers and check for signs of drunk driving. Although the majority of drivers passed through the checkpoint without incident, three were arrested on suspicion of DUI. Additionally, one of the three also faces drug charges and penalties for allegedly driving with a suspended license.
The checkpoint was funded by federal grants as part of an effort to deter and drunk driving in Ohio. These types of DUI checkpoints are intended to serve as a form of aggressive enforcement where all drivers, regardless of suspicion, must pass muster to continue on to their destinations.
Although these types of stops are increasingly common, they can be alarming for drivers who are not used to police stops or may have had a drink or two before driving and are concerned about their sobriety. The most important thing a driver should remember is that the majority of these stops are very brief — often just a matter of seconds — and generally are without incident. A motorist should remain calm and courteous while interacting with police officers.
However, drivers should also be aware that they do not have to answer any questions regarding their activities that day, including those related to possible drinking. If an officer asks a question you’re not comfortable answering, you may politely decline to answer and the officer is not allowed to use it against you.
If you believe your rights were violated in a DUI checkpoint in Ohio, contact a dedicated drunk driving defense lawyer with the Law Office of Gregory S. Robey in Cleveland.