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Newtown Cops to Hold DUI Checkpoint

Police have not released where the checkpoint will be held, but officials report it will be held Friday.

 

Newtown Township police will be conducting a DUI checkpoint at an undisclosed location inside their jurisdiction on Friday.

In a statement released this week, police officials said they would did not disclose the time and location of the checkpoint.

DUI checkpoints are conducted in Bucks County by local and state police. The location is rarely released to the media ahead of the checkpoint in an effort curb drivers from avoiding the area.

Data from several studies from around the globe has shown that fewer alcohol-related vehicle accidents happen when checkpoints are present in a given area, according to information released by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In recent years, sobriety checkpoints, as they are also known, have come under scrutiny for several reasons.

Whether the checkpoint violates the Fourth Amendment right is one of the reasons. The amendment helps protect citizens against unreasonable searches and seizures of property or persons.

In 1990, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the checkpoints are legal and constitutional. However, several states have barred law enforcement from holding the checkpoints due to question regarding the legality.

A citizen group, Valley Forge Revolutionaries, has

On of the group members told that DUI checkpoints are ineffectual, fiscally irresponsible and violated the Fourth Amendment. He suggested increased road patrols could be just as effective.

The cost of maintaining checkpoints is an issue that has been raised across the nation. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported on its website that the checkpoints are "costly to initiate and maintain."

A stopped over 117 cars, caught one person for suspected DUI and nabbed 13 others for other traffic violations. 

 

Do you think DUI checkpoints are worth the cost? Do you believe they are legal? Tell us your thoughts in the comment section below.

 

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Eric S August 30, 2012 at 02:49 AM
be violated, and warrants shall issue, upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the person or things to be seized. No where does it give authority to anyone to ramdomly stop citizens without probable cause. Come on folks, think about it. Your going about your business and breaking no laws yet you are forced to submit to questioning by police. Does anyone actually feel this is ok and not counter to our founding documents? Hell, we fought a revolution right here in Bucks County, right here in Newtown, because of exactly such actions against us! I see they aren't releasing the location. I take issue with that as well. The way they get around the 4th Amendment is to annouce the location therefore giving people the opportunity to take a different route. So, Newtown PD is about to break the law while trying the catch lawbreakers.
Eric S August 30, 2012 at 02:50 AM
Those who will give a little liberty for the sake of security deserve neither. While I'm all for getting drunks off the road I have to be at odds with doing so in this manner. It's the price we pay for our freedoms....or what is left of them. Checkpoints are nothing more than a feel-good display for the sake of positive reaction from the people....particularly the sheep among us who are about to drink all the kool-aide. Your being lied to. If they really were about getting drunks why not simply set up a block away for any bar and have a blast all night long? Just how hard would it be to set an undercover in a bar who can report someone observed drinking (enough to be considered drunk) and observed driving away? Oh no, that would drive away business and in turn drive away tax dollars. This is not about safety, it is about money and perceptions.
Eric S August 30, 2012 at 02:54 AM
Opps....deleted the first part of the Fourth Amendment The right of the people to be secure in their persons, house, papers and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation and particularly describing the places to be searched, and the persons to be seized.
David Lucerne August 30, 2012 at 05:55 PM
Police have a mandate to protect and to serve. It has appeared to me that the police presence is higher during evening hours, where the department chooses to expend significantly more resources on activities such as these checkpoints. Our children, however, are playing and walking through our town predominantly in the daytime hours. The choice to allocate greater resources toward the evening hours seems to me to be an obvious move away from the original intent of the organization to protect and serve out most valuable an vulnerable resources...our children. This gradual move away from service and toward becoming an arm of the government that simply attempts to extract money in yet another form of tax on the people is at the heart of the steady loss of connectivity the community feels toward these professionals. I find this to be quite regrettable.
Hank Ford August 30, 2012 at 08:27 PM
Checkpoints can cost more than $10,000 each time they’re set up compared to $300 for each roving patrol. Considering how tight state and local budgets are in this dismal economy, is it really a wise investment? Also a roving patrol covers a much larger area than a checkpoint. Instead of just taking what the media gives us we should be asking questions. http://www.paduiblog.com/pa-dui/pennsylvania-dui-checkpoints-are-they-really-worth-it/
the VOICE August 31, 2012 at 05:51 AM
They R NOT breaking the law.
the VOICE August 31, 2012 at 05:54 AM
R U forgetting that is it a Privelige (not a right) in PA to drive ?
the VOICE August 31, 2012 at 05:55 AM
Get the drunks off the road any way U can !
Eric S August 31, 2012 at 01:16 PM
What in the world does that have to do with violating our right to not be questioned for not committing a crime? Seriously, they are pulling people over to question them and/or demand identification without probable cause.....and you can't see where that is a problem? It has nothing at all to do with anything else. It could be waling down the street or sitting in your yard. The 4th Amendment is very, very clear on when and how we can be questioned or ID'ed by any legal authority. Driving down the road breaking no laws is one of them.
Eric S August 31, 2012 at 01:31 PM
Ok..how about we just shoot them when we find them....you ok with that? Hmmmm..maybe we can begin to just randomly stop everyone anywhere we feel like it....including you, in your home, to make sure your not going to break any laws. Our nation is not made up of "any way we can" laws. The Consititution in the guiding document to how we operate. Yes, there are risks, such as not being able to stop a lot of crimes before or during their commission. And there are rewards, such as the freedom to not be harrassed by the government, to go where we please without papers saying we are allowed to travel, and speak openly against our leadership. When those tenets are broken we are losing freedom. We are being subjected to being suspects before any evidence is present that we are breaking any law.
Eric S August 31, 2012 at 01:41 PM
So does a privledge vacate our rights as enumberated in the Consititution? Your one of the sheep I was referring to. Your just taking what they hand you without thinking it through or questioning what they tell you. You have a civic duty to understand how our nation conducts business. Please, spend an hour and read the Consititution. Every aspect of our laws are described within it's text.
John Q September 01, 2012 at 03:53 AM
I've posted my opinion on this subject in the past. These are not "DUI checkpoints or sobriety checkpoints." If they were then you would read of people being arrested only for Driving Under the Influence. These are vehicle checkpoints. They shine a flashlight throughout the inside of your car including the rear seat area, which is basically an illegal search. They ask you for your ID even if you have done nothing wrong. They routinely issue many more citations for minor vehicle and traffic violations than for DUI violations during these checkpoints. All I ask is that they call these checkpoints what they really are.
John Q September 01, 2012 at 03:58 AM
"Do you think DUI checkpoints are worth the cost?" No, I do not if the cost that I have previously read is true for the amount of offenders arrested. Roving DUI patrols are much more effective and less costly. "Do you believe they are legal?" I personally don't think so, but they have been upheld in court rulings. "Tell us your thoughts in the comment section below." Please read above.
Eric S September 01, 2012 at 01:00 PM
The courts have upheld them when the locations are announced before hand. The presumption is that people were told of the checkpoint and had the opportunity to avoid it if they so desired.
Man Landers September 01, 2012 at 01:11 PM
Patch/Tom - Would you report on the location and outcome of the patrol? Curious to see where this was held and how many people were detained. If anyone encountered it last night, please share your story. Thanks.
Tom Sofield September 01, 2012 at 02:41 PM
I certainly will.
the VOICE September 01, 2012 at 07:50 PM
Maybe U R one of the DRUNKS !
Eric S September 01, 2012 at 08:12 PM
Yeah, that would be me, one of the drunks trying to avoid police detection. Is that the best argument you can come up with to "voice" your opinion on checkpoints? If so, good Lord, I might have to begin siding with those who feel voting should require qualifications.
Eric S September 02, 2012 at 03:46 AM
Maybe censureship isn't such a bad idea after all.
Sandy September 02, 2012 at 04:33 PM
I was wondering, isn't this basicly the same as Newtown cops staking out the boro's bars & grills. I've seen that female cop, parked waiting for someone to exit the bar just to follow them. Concocting an excuse to pull them over and haul them to St. Marys for a blood test. That to me is just as wrong. Everyone has weddings and social events that supply a cocktail or two. Most officers understand that, and unless they are driving irradically, will not pull them over. Then again, certain other cops just try to bully the public.
Eric S September 02, 2012 at 04:46 PM
I see that as a differnet approach than randomly stopping people and forcing them to comply to what amounts to an unconsititutional and in my opinion illegal questioning and search. Actually observing a person leave a bar and then drive irratically gives probable cause for a stop. Driving home from wherever while breaking no laws isn't even close to probable cause to ask me anything or look into my car or demand identification.
B. Walker September 02, 2012 at 05:08 PM
Typo - meant 532
John Q September 08, 2012 at 01:53 AM
Tom, have they released the results of this checkpoint yet?
John Q September 10, 2012 at 08:08 PM
Looks like I was wrong. This checkpoint actually was effective. 8 people arrested. http://www.phillyburbs.com/news/local/courier_times_news/arrests-at-dui-checkpoint/article_945c7fe0-0bfa-539d-88be-13339b90eed6.html
Tom Sofield September 10, 2012 at 08:45 PM
8 people were taken into custody during the checkpoint - http://patch.com/A-xDjy
Tom Sofield September 10, 2012 at 08:45 PM
John - here are the results: http://patch.com/A-xDjy
Sabrina September 11, 2012 at 03:05 PM
My daughter went through the DUI checkpoint. they asked for her for driver's license, insurance and registration. They asked her what she was doing out that night. They asked her where she was going and where she was coming from. They shone a flashlight throughout her car and into her eyes. They snooped, looking into her backseat. They made comments, unheard by her, that gave her pause and while she says she was treated respectfully, there was an underlying current of antagonism and bullying. She said she was tempted to begin answering their questions in Russian because it reminded her so much of our cold war memories of how we perceived Russia in the movies of that time. "Papers?"
Eric S September 11, 2012 at 03:50 PM
This is my objection to the checkpoints. They are asking for info based on no reasonable suspicion of a crime or violation. It's one thing to sit on the side of the road and look for expired registration/inspections, it's another to physically stop citizens to question us. If DUIs are really the goal, why not set up near a bar? If you can't find drunks at a bar your in the wrong line of work. Checkpoints serve two purposes. One is the stated reason, DUIs and other violations. The other is to cause a form of intimidation to civilians. It is a blatant attempt to bully us into believing the police have authority beyond their mandate. Tell your daughter that next time, roll the window down two inches and then refuse to speak. This is completely legal, we have no legal duty to say a word. In fact we have legal backing to not say a word, the Fifth Amendment....the right to not incriminate ourselves. They can get as upset as they wish, they will still not be able to do a thing. Should they force their way in they have broken civil rights laws and a lawsuit can be brought against the offending police department. Another tactic is a few simple words. "Am I being detained or am I free to go?" If there is no reasonable articuble suspicion of a crime they cannot detain you. If they do not allow you to leave they are violating civil rights laws. People.....the police, bless their brave hearts.....cannot just stop and question us!
Sandy October 01, 2012 at 04:43 AM
I HAVE TO LAUGH.. " THE VOICE" seems to approve of DUI check points because of drinking and driving. YET, this week she supports the Liquor License approval for an athletic and swim club. I guess you can't make up your mind which will profit you more, or is it just you love to debate everyone???
Sandy October 01, 2012 at 04:49 AM
Care to comment this under NAC Liquior license approval ?? My guess is no.

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