Law enforcement officers made their presence known on a recent weekend night in Oklahoma City. Police car lights were flashing, illuminating bright orange cones and the vehicles waiting to go through a sobriety checkpoint staffed by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol and the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office.
The checkpoints have a two-pronged purpose: to deter drunk driving by making people aware that police officers are patrolling the streets and to make arrests for DUI.
“The goal out here is to, obviously, to decrease DUIs,” a spokesperson for the Highway Patrol told a KFOR reporter. He added that troopers are also looking for drivers impaired by other intoxicating substances as well. “If it’s marijuana or any other prescribed medication, it can impair your driving.”
In some cases, an officer at a checkpoint will ask a driver to take a breath or blood test to determine their BAC (blood alcohol content). People have the option to refuse the test, but a refusal does carry consequences.
The state Department of Public Safety says on its website that “your driving privileges will be revoked” if you refuse a test. A first refusal will result in a 6-month driver’s license revocation. A second refusal will mean a full-year revocation, and a third or subsequent refusal within 10 years results in a revocation of your license for three years.
It should be noted that those penalties are identical to the revocations drivers convicted of drunk driving face.
If you have been charged with drunk or drugged driving, contact an Oklahoma City attorney experienced in effective DUI defense to ensure that your rights and freedom are defended at every step of the legal process.