The famous law school answer is - it depends! Police have to follow certain rules when stopping you at a checkpoint. If they do not, a skilled defense attorney can exploit that, and possibly beat the charge. You definitely want to hire an attorney as soon as possible. One of the reasons is when you get a DWI, you are entitled to an administrative hearing. If you fail to request this hearing, your driver's license can be suspended even though you have not yet been convicted! A good DWI attorney knows how to preserve your rights and fight through the final disposition of your case.
Let’s say Mikey is driving down Perkins Road in Baton Rouge when he sees flashing lights ahead. Mikey had three beers over a two hour period at Bulldog's pint night when a buddy spilled a beer on his favorite pair of jeans and he decided to leave. Mikey rolls up to the checkpoint and is greeted by Officer Hardcore who demands Mikey step out of the vehicle. Mikey is suspicious because Officer Hardcore let three nice vehicles through the checkpoint but stopped him. Mikey drives a beat-up 1970 Camaro. Immediately Mikey complies and Officer Hardcore notes the strong presence of an unknown alcoholic beverage emanating from Mikey's person. Officer Hardcore tells Mikey to perform a Standard Field Sobriety Test and Mikey says, "I'd really like to speak with my defense attorney Ed Atebara first."
Officer Hardcore arrests Mikey for suspicion of DWI and places him in the back of a van and tells him to give a breath sample. Mikey refuses the test politely and Officer Hardcore tells him that he is going to jail. Mikey may be able to beat the wrap, but he can't beat the ride.
Mikey was right to be suspicious. For a DWI checkpoint to withstand constitutional muster, it has to abide by certain guidelines. Normally when the police stop you, they have to have a reason, otherwise it’s an illegal search and seizure of the person. However, DWI checkpoints are a little different, The United State Supreme Court set forth guidelines for checkpoints which the Louisiana Supreme Court has adopted. If the police deviate from the operational guidelines set forth for the checkpoint, then the stop may have been illegal.
In the example above, Mikey "refused to blow" and offer evidence against himself. This makes it harder for the state to prove its case and improves Mikey's chances of "beating the wrap.” Remember just because you're arrested for a DWI/DUI does not mean you will be convicted of one.
In all criminal cases, it is important to seek immediate legal advice, so that you do not sleep on your rights.