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Smartphones Create Applications for DUI Checkpoints


While advancements in technology make it possible for us to have a wealth of information instantaneously, four Democratic Senators contend that recent Smartphone applications may have gone too far.

Recently, USA Today covered the story about four Democratic senators that asked Apple, Google and BlackBerry to stop selling or disable the downloadable applications that would allow users to identify the locations where local law enforcement has set up a DUI checkpoint. Many of these applications provide real-time updates of DUI checkpoint locations.

In their letter, the senators wrote, “We appreciate the technology that has allowed millions of Americans to have information at their fingertips, but giving drunk drivers a free tool to evade checkpoints, putting innocent families and children at risk, is a matter of public concern.”

Under California law, law enforcement may set up DUI checkpoints if the undertaking meets certain constitutional requirements, and the California Supreme Court has provided guidance to law enforcement in their decision in Ingersoll v. Palmer by setting forth specific criteria for setting up a DUI checkpoint.

Interestingly, the more pre-DUI Checkpoint publicity there is, the more constitutional the intrusion is into our privacy. I suggest these senators review the 4th Amendment to our Constitution and read the Ingersoll case.

While Orange County DUI Attorney Scott D. Hughes strongly advocates against drinking and driving, he has offered some helpful tips on what to do if you are pulled over for a DUI.

Scott Hughes is a criminal defense lawyer in Orange County, California practicing in State and Federal Court.

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