Illegal DUI Checkpoint in Pasco County, FL, Caught on Videotape

Part I – DUI Attorney Jason Sammis was recently interviewed by Mike Deeson with Tampa Bay’s 10 News on an illegal DUI checkpoint in Pasco County, FL. The problems with this DUI sobriety checkpoint may have huge implications for the officers involved and for future DUI sobriety checkpoints conducted in Pasco County, FL.

The next DUI sobriety checkpoint in Pasco County is scheduled for September 8, 2012. The location of the checkpoint will be in New Port Richey or Holiday, Florida. The checkpoint will be conducted by the the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office and the Dade City Police Department.

This DUI sobriety checkpoint happened at the Southgate Shopping Center, 5127 U.S. 19, New Port Richey, starting at 8 p.m. on December 16, 2011. The checkpoint was conducted the Florida Highway Patrol, New Port Richey Police Department, Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, Dade City Police department and Florida Highway Patrol Auxiliary.

The operational plan required that the field officers stop every third vehicle. The point of the operational plan was that the officer in the field were to have no discretion when it came to deciding which vehicles to stop. The courts have routinely held that the roadblock is illegal and unconstitutional if officers in the field fail to follow the requirements of the operational plan, especially an objective standard such as “stop every third vehicle.”

For this DUI sobriety checkpoint in Pasco County the arrest video begins at 12:16:25 and ends at 12:33:07. It appears that a total of 49 vehicles passed through the checkpoint with 29 of those vehicles being directed into the checkpoint.  So more than 60% of the vehicles were stopped during that time period. The Operation Plan required that “every third vehicle” is stopped which would mean that only 33% of the vehicles should have been stopped.

For those of you interested in what the arrest video actually shows – we created a timeline that details exactly how the operational plan was violated.

Operational Plan: Systematic method of stopping vehicles ~ Every third (3rd) vehicle will be stopped during the Checkpoint detail. 

Date: Friday Dec. 16, 2011, 8pm through Sat. 17, 2 am 2011

Location: Southbound SR (5127 U.S. 19), New Port Richey, Florida

Video Time: Dec. 17, 2011 a12:16:24 Arrest video starts showing subject being detained.

Southbound Vehicle Count:

New Count – (3) Stopped Total (1)

12:16:25 ~ 1st vehicle (white pick-up) passes through

12:16:28 ~ 2nd vehicle passes through

12:16:32 ~ 3rd vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (6)       Stopped Total (1)

12:16:39 ~ 1st  vehicle passes through

12:16:58  audio engages

12:16:58 ~ 2nd   vehicle passes through

12:17:22 ~  3rd  vehicle – *Commercial Truck 6-10 wheeler (Over Cab)

* Possibly Not Stopped – Operational Plan: There will be a special stopping area on the outside traffic lane of southbound SR55 set aside to accommodate large commercial vehicles if they fall within the vehicle count.

New Count – (9) Stopped Total (3)

12:17:28 ~ 1st vehicle – directed into checkpoint

12:17:34 ~ 2nd vehicle – directed into checkpoint

[12:17: 46 ~ (1st and 2nd vehicles can be seen in middle left side of screen)]

12:17:44 ~ 3rd vehicle passes through

New Count – (10)      Stopped Total (4)

12:18:31 ~ 1st vehicle – directed into checkpoint

New Count – (15)      Stopped Total (7)

12:19:14 ~ 1st vehicle directed into checkpoint

2nd vehicle directed into checkpoint

3rd  vehicle (pick-up) directed into checkpoint

12:19:30     4th vehicle was a patrol vehicle pulling into the checkpoint and turning left

5th vehicle passes through

6th vehicle passes through

New Count – (16)     Stopped Total (8)

12:20:27 ~  1st  vehicle directed into the checkpoint

New Count -  (19)   Stopped Total (11)

12:22:10 ~ 1st vehicle (pick-up) directed into checkpoint

12:22:14 ~ 2nd vehicle directed into checkpoint

12:22:33 ~ 3rd vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (20)      Stopped Total (12)

12:23:05 ~ 1st vehicle directed into checkpoint (white compact)

New Count – (21)      Stopped Total (13)

12:23:16 ~ 1st vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (22)      Stopped Total (14)

12:24:20 ~ 1st vehicle passes through

12:24:47 ~ 2nd vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (25)      Stopped Total (17)

12:24:58 ~ 1st vehicle directed into checkpoint

12:25:02 ~ 2nd vehicle directed into checkpoint

12:25:10 ~ 3rd vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (27)      Stopped Total (18)

12:25:30 ~ 1st vehicle passes through

12:25:35 ~ 2nd vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (30)      Stopped Total (19)

12:26:01 ~ 1st vehicle passes through

12:26:06 ~ 2nd vehicle passes through

12:26:23 ~ 3rd vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (33)      Stopped Total (19)

12:26: 37~ 1st vehicle passes through

12:26:55 ~ 2nd vehicle passes through

12:26:59 ~ 3rd vehicle passes through

New Count – (34)      Stopped Total (20)

12:27:03 ~ 1st vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count- (35)      Stopped Total (21)

12:27:07 ~ 1st vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (36)      Stopped Total (22)

12:27:10 ~ 1st vehicle directed into checkpoint 

New Count – (40)      Stopped Total (23)

12:27:25 ~ 1st vehicle passes through

12:27:26 ~ 2nd vehicle passes through

12:27:34 ~ 3rd vehicle passes through

12:27:57 ~ 4th vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (44)      Stopped Total (25)

12:28:08 ~ 1st vehicle passes through

12:28:46 ~ 2nd vehicle passes through

12:29:23 ~  3rd vehicle directed into checkpoint

12:29:28 ~ 4th vehicle directed into checkpoint (can be seen in center screen)

New Count – (45)      Stopped Total (26)

12:29:49  1st vehicle (center screen) possible into checkpoint (tail-lights)

Back to Full screen

New Count – (48)      Stopped Total (28)

12:31:04 ~ 1st vehicle commercial truck 18 wheeler pass through

12:32:18 ~ 2nd vehicle directed into checkpoint

12:32:21 ~ 3rd vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count – (49)      Stopped Total (29)

12:32:35 ~ 1st vehicle directed into checkpoint

New Count –

12:33:07      video ends

Click here to read: Part II – Why Officers Shouldn’t Video Tape Their Own Misconduct; Florida Highway Patrol on DUI Checkpoints

 

2 Comments

  1. tara
    Posted September 11, 2012 at 11:10 | Permalink | Reply

    This is insane. Thank you for giving us a detailed description of this roadblock.

  2. gary smith
    Posted November 23, 2013 at 16:23 | Permalink | Reply

    it happen to me to i went to the store to get something to eat pull in the store i change my mine back out cop pull me over at the store said i look suspicious i did everything they wont me to i just couldnt touch my nose with my right hand due to got rob a shot my hand had cas on it

2 Trackbacks

  1. [...] YouTube video on the Pasco County DUI Enforcement Mobile Unit used for DUI saturation patrols and DUI sobriety checkpoints in Pasco County in New Port Richey on U.S. 19. This video was filmed on late Saturday night, March 20, [...]

  2. [...] Part I – Illegal DUI Checkpoint in Pasco County, FL, Caught on Video [...]

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