Common Tactics Pennsylvania Officers Use to Pull Over DUI Suspects
Whenever law enforcement officers make traffic stops in Pennsylvania, they must have a justifiable reason to do so. Therefore, officers tend to keep a close eye out for other traffic violations in order to legally pull over a person they think might be driving under the influence (DUI).
The following are a few of the most common tactics officers use to stop drivers for this purpose:
- Strategic positioning. Officers might choose to wait near parking lots of nightclubs or bars, watching drivers as they leave. If the officers see a person who appears to be intoxicated get behind the wheel, they will often follow that person until he or she commits some sort of minor traffic violation.
- Speed traps. Officers sitting on the freeway or on busy city streets tend to hide in places where drivers are known to travel at high speeds. When officers set up these speed traps at night, especially on weekends, they know they are more likely to catch drivers who are also drunk driving.
- Engaging in conversation. Even after officers have already pulled over drivers, there are still some strategies they need to use before they can actually arrest them. One of these is to engage drivers in casual conversation and get them to admit they had been drinking through subtle questioning. Officers are trained in asking specific types of questions in these scenarios.
- DUI checkpoints. In Pennsylvania, law enforcement agencies may conduct operations at checkpoints. All drivers who pass through these checkpoints may be stopped at any time and investigated for a potential drunk driving offense, as long as the checkpoint complies with state law.
If you’ve been arrested for driving under the influence in Pennsylvania, you could face large fines, a temporary suspension of your driver’s license and jail time, in some cases. If it is your second or subsequent offense, it’s also likely that you’ll need to install an ignition interlock device, which prevents your vehicle from starting until you pass a mobile breath test. If law enforcement officers violated any of your constitutional rights when making the arrest, however, your lawyer may be able to seek reduced or dismissed charges on your behalf.