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Just four days after my blog post lamenting the use of presumptively unconstitutional roadblocks in Durham, Police Chief C.J. Davis announced that this intrusive and offensive tactic will no longer be used by the Durham police.

According to Chief Davis, effective immediately as of March 5, 2017, “checkpoints in the city of Durham have been directed to cease and desist.”  The decision came in the wake of abuses of the tactic in the context of recent changes in immigration policy, where police were abusing the Supreme Court’s allowance of checkpoints under limited circumstances to advance a more aggressive deportation policy by stopping everyone in certain areas, including school zones, where immigrants were believed to be traveling.

Regardless of your politics, if you believe in the most basic concept of American liberty, you should be appalled at the use of roadblocks in which civilians are stopped and interrogated without suspicion of any crime.  It is the tactic of a fascist police state, and it should not be tolerated here or anywhere in the United States, regardless of the Supreme Court’s limited approval of the practice under narrow circumstances.


Durham DWI lawyer Ben Hiltzheimer is a criminal defense attorney in Durham, North Carolina, who represents individuals charged with DWIs and the full spectrum of misdemeanors and felonies. Contact us for a free, confidential consultation and case evaluation at (919) 899-9404.

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Ben is an experienced trial lawyer who earned his law degree from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. He was trained in trial practice at the nation’s preeminent Public Defender agency, the federally funded Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, described by United States Attorney General Eric Holder as “the best public defender office in the country.”

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