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FCPD: Sobriety Checkpoint To Be Rescheduled

by Fatimah Waseem November 13, 2017 at 1:30 pm 16 Comments


Fairfax County police plan to reschedule a sobriety checkpoint soon. A checkpoint planned for late Friday was cancelled due to freezing temperatures and a high wind chill. The checkpoint was scheduled to run from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m.

FCPD regularly holds checkpoints in various parts of the county in order to monitor for intoxicated drivers. The 56-mile Reston District covers Reston, Great Falls, and parts of Vienna, Oak Hill and Herndon.

Along with publicity and awareness, checkpoints have proven to be effective in the fight against drunk driving, police say.

File photo.

  • Mike M

    So, if you wanna drink and drive and get away with it, wait for the cold. Did they pay our afraid-of-the-cold heroes anyway?

  • OneReally

    This story has brought me humor for the day. Thank you FCPD!!!

  • Why do you bother?

    Am I the only person who thinks that telling people when you’re conducting “surprise” checkpoints defeats the purpose of the checkpoints?

    • Greg

      It’s how the cops get around the fourth and 14th amendments.

      https://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/496/444/case.html

    • John Higgins

      If it was intended to be a “surprise” you would be right. There is deterrent value in these programs. Plus, and here I am guessing, impaired drivers are not likely to connect the dots. I’d be happy to fund more of these checkpoints, not fewer.

      • Why do you bother?

        So, they know to stay off the roads for one day. If this was promoted as a series of random (i.e., unannounced) checkpoints, it might have an effect on driver behavior.

        • John Higgins

          No doubt you are right about the higher effectiveness of random/unannounced checkpoints. But the courts would not permit that. Greg provided a link to a USSC decision that touches on some elements of this issue. The Court has gone much further since then. Any element of randomness or deviation from a pre-approved plan invites the charge that the stops are arbitrary and therefore unconstitutional seizures. (Go figure.) I don’t share Greg’s view that this is how police “get around the fourth and 14th amendments.” Seems to me it is how they balance our rights with the public interest of reducing drunk driving…within the framework the Court has laid out for them. Another example of how common sense solutions don’t work in our snowflake infested society.

          • The Constitutionalist

            That’s quite literally exactly how they get around your constitutional rights. Public interest is a farce, it’s quite possible, that two people are interested in different things. It’s my interest to travel uninhibited without being questioned by police, a right also guaranteed by the constitution.

      • The Constitutionalist

        You would actually pay to place more of these checkpoints around?

        • John Higgins

          Yes, I would. No crusader here, and I have no personal experiences that lead me to dig deeply enough to know the statistics. But it seems to me quite evident that DUI is a continuing, serious threat to those who use the roads, and that’s all of us. I’m not clever enough to suggest a way to stop DUI, so I support reasonable ways to lessen the threat. One can disagree that checkpoints are effective; many hold the other view. I submit to bag checks at ballparks, wands and scans at airports, and even pay for periodic safety inspections of my car – all unnecessary intrusions on my personal circumstances, but part of the best systems we have come up with to protect you and me from “them”.

          • The Constitutionalist

            For me, and I do respect your well thought out reasons, I believe that DUI checkpoints run contrary to our constitutional rights. I tend not to believe in the public good or the (in my opinion– unconstitutional} sacrifices necessary to protect you and me from “them,” but we can be different and respectfully agree to disagree.

  • Greg

    Send them to Minnesota for training…

  • Adrian Havill

    What a bunch of wussies. What do they do in Maine when it’s below zero?

    • Mike M

      Ahem. They drink, I can say with the confidence of experience.

  • OldButSlow

    This is pretty hilarious, especially considering how traditional it is to drink to ward off cold…

    Announcing checkpoints does seem to negate the element of surprise, but it’s not a horrible idea. For example, in a lot of European countries, they announce that a speed camera is ahead on the highway and sometimes even have flashing lights on it. If your goal is to get people to slow down, it works. If your goal is to make money, it doesn’t. Which says something about the priorities of our region’s speed cameras.

    • The Constitutionalist

      That’s actually a requirement here in the U.S. also, minus the flashing lights, and they still successfully rake in millions of unconstitutionally claimed dollars.

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