Here in the Garden State, DWI checkpoints (or drunk driving roadblocks, by which they are also referred) are a common tool used by police departments to help decrease the number of alcohol-related traffic accidents, as well as to signal to drivers that drunk driving is in no way being tolerated any more. That said, it is still rather confusing to the general public regarding the how and why of these seemingly invasive means of generating DWI arrests.
Because the U.S. Constitution protects the public from unreasonable search and seizure, many trial lawyers find the use of sobriety roadblocks and DWI checkpoints somewhat of an affront to the basic rights afforded citizens by the Bill of Rights. Yet, despite the fundamental argument that motorist should be protected against unreasonable search or seizure by the police during a traffic stop, the Supreme Court has previously upheld the constitutionality of drunk driving checkpoints as a means for ensuring the public good.
As most any New Jersey driver is no doubt aware, anti-drunken driving enforcement in the Garden State is undertaken in a number of different ways depending on the season or circumstances. Enhanced roving drunk driving police patrols throughout counties like Hudson, Atlantic, Bergen and Middlesex are often employed before and during popular holidays such as July Fourth, Memorial Day and New Year’s. The use of DWI-DUI checkpoints and sobriety roadblocks is also thought to catch a percentage of motorists who may be inebriated behind the wheel.