Police checkpoints aim to maintain public safety through spot checks that deter criminals who roam around the streets. Policemen will set up roadblocks, where they stop and inspect almost all drivers and vehicles passing along a road. So it is important to be aware of Motorist Rights at a checkpoint, so if by any chance you encounter one, you know what you should do.
Motorist Rights at a checkpoint
They must treat you with respect
It is a must for them to be respectful to all the motorists that they will check. However, the motorist must respect them as well. They should explain the purpose of the checkpoint and ask to apologize for the inconvenience.
It is your choice if you to answer their questions or not
You have the right to remain silent or refuse to answer the questions that they will ask.
Policemen should not get any amount of money
Extortion is not allowed. You have the right not to give any amount of money.
They must not harass you
Harassment and other misbehavior are prohibited when they are conducting checkpoint operations.
Policemen should not force you to open your car or trunk
They are only allowed to conduct a visual inspection. However, if the car window is tinted they are allowed to request to lower down your window for them to see.
Police should not force you to step out of your car and they don’t have the rights to step into your car
However, there are instances or exceptions for them to continue thoroughly their inspections. Here are the conditions:
-The policemen have search warrant
-You have a suspicious item or suspicious markings around the car
-You committed a traffic violation
Things to remember:
-Remember that checkpoint must be well lighted and the personnel should be uniformed
-When you see a checkpoint, slow down, dim headlights, and turn on cabin lights
-Lock all doors of the vehicle since checkpoint is an only visual inspection
-Do not step out of the vehicle
-Do not allow physical body search
-Motorist is not required to open compartment, trunk or personal things
-Always prepare your driver’s license and car registration
-Be ready to use your phone in case of an emergency. Call speed dial emergency number. (117)
-Be respectful when answering
-Have a presence of mind
-Do not panic
*In addition, if the officers have a search warrant kindly let them.
Our Police officers only want safeness for everyone. Respect them and for sure they will respect you as well.