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Is Warning Your Fellow Drivers About Police Checkpoints Against the Law?

Is Warning Your Fellow Drivers About Police Checkpoints Against the Law?

You are driving in your car at night when traffic slows to a crawl. As you lean your head out the window, you see the cause — a police checkpoint. While you have nothing to worry about, you feel a responsibility to warn your fellow drivers. Are you breaking the law if you do?

Apparently you are. In fact, warning other motorists about a police checkpoint is considered interfering with a police operation. Doug “Deo” Odolecki learned this the hard way when he tried to alert oncoming traffic in Parma, Ohio of a DUI checkpoint up the road.

The following are additional details about the case:

  • On June 13th at 10 p.m., Odolecki was standing on the sidewalk at the intersection of Brookpark Road and State Road holding a sign instructing motorists to Turn Now! to avoid a DUI check-point.
  • The sobriety checkpoint about which Odolecki was warning his fellow drivers was located half a mile away at Tuxedo Avenue and State Road.
  • Authorities determined Odolecki was guilty of obstructing justice since he was interfering with a police checkpoint.
  • Parma Police Lieutenant Brian McCann asked Odolecki to remove the part of his sign that instructed drivers to turn away from the checkpoint.
  • Odolecki refused to comply and received a ticket.

Local laws explain that police must notify residents about DUI checkpoints at least a few hours in advance. If you are arrested unjustly or believe your constitutional rights have been violated, do not hesitate in contacting an experienced criminal defense attorney.


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