You Have Been Stopped By The Police And They Begin A DUI Investigation – What You Need To Know

Written by: Robert Laurens Driessen

        This will provide information on how a DUI investigation takes place and your rights during a DUI investigation in California. This is really designed for those that believe they are over the legal limit (BAC .08).

After you are stopped – what you need to do.

Remain calm. Be prepared to hand your driver’s license, proof of insurance, and vehicle registration to the officer. You will want to have all these items in an easy to access place. The longer it takes you to find them or if you have difficulty finding these items – that will be used against you in court.  Be respectful. An officer is more likely to work with you if he/she thinks that you are a good person. Many individuals are arrested due to their attitude and you do not want to be one of them.


The officer will begin to ask you questions – what you need to answer.

The police officer will start to ask you questions. This will either occur while you are still seated in the car or just after the officer has had you exit the vehicle. You are not entitled to the Miranda waiver at this time. California courts have long held that routine roadside investigations do not apply. This means you need to be careful in what information you provide. You are not required to answer any of these questions. All of the questions are designed to be used against you in court. Be respectful and ask the officer if you are required to provide the information and decline to answer any questions.


Field Sobriety Tests  (FST) – You are not required to perform them

Typically the first test an officer will initiate is the HGN test (Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus). This is where the officer will look into your eyes and follow either a finger or a pen. You are not required to complete this test. Ask the officer if you are required to complete this test (the answer is no) and decline the test. Under no circumstances should you complete this test.  The remaining tests are typically the Walk and Turn, One Leg Stand, Finger to Nose, and the Romberg Test. Again ask the officer if you are required to complete the test (the answer is no) and decline all of the tests.  The Preliminary Alcohol Screening (PAS)  This is the roadside breath test. This is another FST and you are not required to complete the test. Just as the other tests make sure you ask the officer of you are required to complete the test and refuse to complete the test.


After You Are Arrested What You Need To Do.

Understand that you will be arrested. This guide is designed for those individuals that are close or over the legal limit. However you will be arrested without providing useful information that the prosecutor needs to find you guilty in court. Had you completed all the tests you still would be arrested and have provided the prosecutor will all the information they need to convict you.   You are required to provide either a blood or a breath test after you have been arrested. Always choose the breath test and do not answer any of the officer’s questions.

Rialto, San Diego, LA, Santa Barbara DUI CheckPoints

Rialto DUI checkpoint
on Vista St by the 210 freeway

San Diego DUI checkpoint
on Palm Ave near Silver Strand

Lompoc DUI checkpoint is supposedly on one of the entrances to town

Los Angeles County DUI Checkpoints

VanNuys – Roscoe Blvd between Woodley and
Haskell, 8pm-2am

Santa Barbara County DUI Checkpoints

Lompoc – undisclosed location, 6p-1a


SMPD Receives Grant For DUI/Driver’s License Checkpoints


A $158,000 grant has been awarded to the Santa Monica Police Department to continue holding DUI/driver’s license checkpoints throughout the city during the next 12 months.

The grant is from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Grant funding will allow additional officers to receive specialized training to detect impaired drivers under the influence of legal and illegal drugs. This training will provide on-the-spot assessment of drivers suspected of drug impairment.

Santa Monica Chief of Police Timothy Jackman said, “The grant activities will specifically target motorcycle safety, DUI offenders, drivers with suspended or revoked licenses, red light running, speeding, and seat belt violations. This will be done through the use of DUI/driver’s license checkpoints and special enforcement operations.”

DUI/driver’s license checkpoints are a key component of the grant.

These highly-visible, widely-publicized events are meant to deter impaired driving, not to increase arrests.

Research shows that crashes involving alcohol drop by an average of 20 percent when well-publicized checkpoints are conducted often enough.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), checkpoints have provided the most effective documented results of any of the DUI enforcement strategies, while yielding considerable cost savings of six dollars for every dollar spent.

This grant also provides drug impairment training to help combat the increasing problem of drivers under the influence of legal and illegal substances.

Modesto Police Department plan DUI Checkpoint and Roving DUI Patrols in November

Modesto, CA – The Modesto Police Department Traffic Unit will be conducting two DUI/Driver’s License checkpoints at undisclosed locations within the city limits along with a DUI Roving Saturation Patrol during the month of November.

DUI/Driver’s License Checkpoints are set for Friday, November 4 and Saturday, November 12 from 9:30 p.m. to 3:30 a.m.

A Roving DUI Saturation Patrol will be deploying on Friday, November 11 between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 3:00 a.m.

Does my DUI have to be dismissed because they didn’t read me my rights?

Friday, November 4, 2011

Question: Does my DUI have to be dismissed
because they didn’t read me my rights?

Can my DUI case be dismissed if the officer didn’t read my Miranda Rights? Does
the police officer have to read me my rights if I get arrested for a DUI? Can my
case be dismissed if he doesn’t?It is highly unlikely that the failure
to read your Miranda
rights will result in a dismissal.  There is a US Supreme Court case called Berkemer
v. McCarty
that says the police can conduct an interrogation after a traffic
stop and elicit incriminating testimony without it violating Miranda or the
Fifth Amendment.  The Berkemer case involved a stop where the cop asked 1
question: do you have a license? The holding has been expanded by cops and
prosecutors to encompass the 27-30 DUI Pre-FST questions.

For more
information about ways to effectively beat a DUI charge visit my website:

 by Ed Blum, Attorney at

Lock your cell phones! California governor allows warrantless search of cell phones

California governor allows warrantless search of cell phones


By Amy Gahran, Special to CNN
updated 12:31 PM EST, Tue October 11, 2011 | Filed under: Mobile


California law now allows warrantless searches of an arrested person's cell phone and access to all data stored in it.
California law now allows warrantless searches of an arrested person’s cell phone and access to all data stored in it.


    • Governor vetoes a bill requiring police to get a warrant to search an arrested person’s phone
    • Authorities could search someone’s texts, chat logs, photos, search history and more
    • California legislators must wait a year before reintroducing the bill


Editor’s note: Amy Gahran writes about mobile tech for She is a San Francisco Bay Area writer and media consultant whose blog,, explores how people communicate in the online age.

(CNN) — California Gov. Jerry Brown has vetoed a bill that would have prohibited police in that state from conducting warrantless searches of the cell phones of people under arrest.

“This measure would overturn a California Supreme Court decision that held that police officers can lawfully search the cell phones of people who they arrest,” the governor’s brief statement said. “The courts are better suited to resolve the complex and case-specific issues relating to constitutional search-and-seizures protections.”

The veto dismayed privacy advocates and others who said it could allow overzealous authorities to trample citizens’ constitutional rights.

California Sen. Mark Leno, who sponsored the bill (SB 914), responded: “This veto is very unfortunate. The message from the governor was rather incoherent. When you consider all the information that is accessible on one smartphone, if that same information was contained anywhere else police would need a warrant to search for it. So it makes no sense to carve out a legal exception for smartphone searches.”

According to California Assembly rules, state legislators must wait a year before attempting to reintroduce this legislation.

Over the summer, SB 914 unanimously passed the California legislature. The bill would have protected against the warrantless search of personal and private information contained in the cell phones of people who have been arrested.

This bill was inspired by a California Supreme Court ruling in January in the case of Gregory Diaz. After his 2007 drug-related arrest, an officer with the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department checked the text messages on Diaz’s phone and found incriminating messages.

That state court ruling has privacy implications that reach far beyond text messages. It allows police in California to access any data stored on an arrestee’s phone: photos, address book, Web-browsing history, data stored in apps (including social media apps), voicemail messages, search history, chat logs, and more. Also, depending on the use of location-enabled services or apps that store data on the phone, the police might also be able to infer the arrestee’s past whereabouts.

On October 3, the U.S. Supreme Court denied a petition to hear the Diaz case. So with the governor’s veto, the state court ruling stands as law in California.

In a blog post about the California veto, law professor Orin Kerr contended that “Governor Brown has it exactly backwards” because legislatures tend to move far more quickly than the courts — an important advantage when dealing with issues that involve fast-changing technology.

Kerr also pointed out that there’s a conflict of interest when the executive branch, which oversees law enforcement in the state, is in a position to block laws that would limit the powers of law enforcement.

What happens next? Hanni Fakhoury, staff attorney for the Electronic Frontier Foundation (which has been supporting the California bill, and following this issue nationwide) expects an increase in law enforcement “fishing expeditions” involving cell phones.

“I think we’ll probably start to see more questionable searches of cell phones in arrests that have nothing to do with cell phones,” he said.

He cited a recent case before California’s 6th Appellate Court in Silicon Valley, where police pulled over a driver expected of driving under the influence. Once they’d arrested the suspect, they searched his cell phone and found evidence indicating possible drug trafficking activity that was unrelated to the original arrest premise. The court supported this search, so evidence from the phone was legally used in the case.

Aside from Fourth Amendment concerns about self-incrimination, Fakhoury and Leno both observed that this veto poses clear concerns for First Amendment and press freedoms in California — and perhaps elsewhere, as other state governments and courts decide what to do about warrantless cell phone searches.

Noting how much the Occupy Wall Street protestors are using cell phones to organize and publicize the demonstrations spreading around the United States, Fakhoury said, “California police might decide to arrest you for disturbing the peace, or illegal camping, and then check your phone and see messages coming through from organizers.”

Said Leno, “Reporters who are covering protests and other events that attract police attention should be concerned about getting arrested and then having the info they gathered, including info about sources, ending up in police hands.”

Since several states are wrestling with this issue, Fakhoury expects it will likely end up before the U.S. Supreme Court.

But in the meantime, if you’re in California and are concerned about privacy and your constitutional rights, it’s a good idea to protect your cell phone and other electronic devices with a password or encryption.

In our January story on warrantless cell phone searches, Catherine Crump of the American Civil Liberties Union told CNN that if you keep your phone locked, “The police can ask you to unlock your phone — which many people will do. But they almost certainly cannot compel you to unlock your phone without the involvement of a judge.”

The opinions expressed in this post are solely those of Amy Gahran.