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The Garza Law Firm, PLLC
550 W. Main St. Suite 340
Knoxville, TN 37902
County Bledsoe County • Bradley County • Chattanooga • Cleveland • Marion County • Monroe County • Polk County • Sequatchie County
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Exactly how can law enforcement in the State of Tennessee set up a Driving under the influence Road block? It all comes down through the Supreme Court of the United States decision in Michigan v. Sitz. A Tennessee Driving under the influence Road Block should be a violation of the 4th Amendment, having said that presently there are exceptions to the infringement that the Supreme Court has acknowledged as well as followed by our Tennessee Supreme Court in State of Tennessee v. Downey.
It again is fully understood that the 4th Amendment provides protection from seizures, (for example being stopped by the law enforcement), seeing that the police have to have probable cause to believe that you have perpetrated a traffic violation or even a suspicion to stop you as a motorist.
In Michigan v. Sitz the Supreme Court of the United States held that a Drunk driving Road block doesn't violate the 4th Amendment as long as specific prerequisites are met. Therefore exactly what are the requirements that the Tennessee DUI Road Block must meet?
(1) The severity of the interference with public liberty
(2) The degree by which the seizure advances the public interest
(3) The gravity of the public concerns served by the seizure
The Supreme Court of Tennessee used this case law from the Supreme Court of the United States to decide the case of State v. Downey, in Downey the Court stated the three part test to determine the Constitutionality of the Tennessee DUI Road Blocks. Ok so how do they really apply here in Tennessee DUI Road Blocks?
(1) They must show a state interest that is so compelling that it allows an intrusion into your 4th Amendment rights to be free from unwarranted seizures, well the state did find a reason to justify the intrusion, and it was preventing Tennessee DUI under the right circumstances, IE the gravity of public concern in preventing Tennessee DUI.
(2) Does the Tennessee DUI Road Blocks work, is it an effective tool, not just some random ineffective procedure. The court used statistics from prior cases to show effectiveness in this technique of preventing Tennessee DUI.
(3) Make the interference with your liberty minimal as possible.
Skilled Knoxville DUI Defense Lawyer
The above is achieved in a Knoxville TN DUI Road Blocks by setting out guidelines that each DUI road block must adhere to. These guidelines are things like ample warnings, length and nature of each detention they make, (which means how long they detain each vehicle). Safety of the Tennessee DUI Road Blocks, as well as blocking both directions of traffic.
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