Routine Random Stop of Commercial Vehicle Deemed Unconstitutional

Des Moines, Polk County, Iowa.  GRL Law has long argued that Department of Transportation Commercial Motor Vehicle Enforcement Officers cannot legally stop commercial drivers without reasonable suspicion of a law violation.  It has long been the practice of Iowa law enforcement officers to randomly stop commercial vehicles to weigh them or check compliance with regulations.  Back in 2016 in a blog titled A case for Truck Drivers and the Fourth Amendment, we set out our contention that the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution requires either law enforcement to have a stationary checkpoint or a reasonable suspicion of a traffic offense in order to stop commercial vehicles.  Now in 2022 we had a case that lined up correctly to challenge this practice.  Following a hearing on defendants motion to suppress evidence a Polk County Judge agreed with GRL’s argument and found that such stops violate the Fourth Amendment.  All charges were subsequently dismissed.