While following the Florida attorneyâ€™s advice may work in some places, in Arkansas, you may not get the results that you desire. A Little Rock attorney, who happens to be a former police officer says, â€œAlthough technically right, in practice it might not work the way people hope that it would,â€ and he should know what heâ€™s talking about. Approximately 95% of his cases are related to DWI defense. In addition, he says, â€œI would never dissuade someone from exercising their rights, but I also would not encourage people to pick fights with the police.â€
The Little Rock attorney also says that, when utilizing this tool, one must pray that the officer who happens to be manning the checkpoint interprets the law the same way that you do. â€œSometimes acquiescence is best just to avoid problems,â€ he added. The lawyer has further stated, â€œIâ€™m not suggesting that people forego their rights just to make an officer happy, but there is a very fine line there that could really get somebody hurt.â€
In addition, the advocates for MADD are also making their sentiments known. They claim that the checkpoints, whether they are intrusive or not, do in fact help to keep intoxicated drivers off the road. MADD Arkansas Program Manager Pamela Sell states, â€œThis is not meant to be something to entrap people and arrest them unfairly.â€
According to the MADD spokeswoman, the goal of sobriety checkpoints are to help people to make smarter choices, not to arrest them. She claims that it has been shown that when law enforcement performs frequent publicized checkpoints, crashes involving drunk drivers are reduced by 20%. However, Sell does agree that thereâ€™s a thin line between harassing law abiding citizens and deterring others from driving while under the influence saying, â€œItâ€™s a slippery slope for law enforcement, itâ€™s a slippery slope for citizens.â€
Texas drivers do not have to worry about sobriety checkpoints like the ones in Florida and Arkansas though because they are illegal here. That doesnâ€™t stop officers from regularly stopping people for minor traffic violations, such as failing to use a signal or speeding, and turning seemingly routine stop into a full blown DWI investigation .