Roadblocks and Social Media responsibility.

Photo courtesy of Delta Optimist files.‘Tis the season for Roadblocks and public reminders not to drink and drive.  It’s also the season in recent years for people to use social media to post the location of roadblocks.

Let’s face the facts ladies and gentlemen; Impaired driving is one of the leading criminal causes of death.  Aside from actually having the legal authority to stop vehicles and check driver’s sobriety, we have a duty to protect the public that we serve.  Not only do our roadblocks catch impaired drivers, they also serve to create visibility and remind drivers that we are out there.  Perhaps that reminder will prevent someone from grabbing the keys after a couple drinks and making a poor decision that could lead to their untimely death, or the  untimely death of someone one of us loves.

Impaired driving should not be acceptable to anyone.

Although it’s not currently against the law to post them, I’m left wondering what the motivation is of these individuals using Social Media to post the location of roadblocks and attempting to prevent the Police from finding and removing impaired drivers from the road.

It then occurred to me that when you consider the police have the authority and a duty to locate and stop impaired drivers, a random roadblock means the police are in “the legal execution of their duties”.  Someone making a post to social media alerting potential impaired drivers of roadblock locations (“actus reus”) sounds a lot like someone making a conscious decision (“mens rea”) to obstruct a peace officer (a criminal offence as defined by section 129 of the Criminal Code of Canada).

I’m curious what your thoughts are? Could a case be made for a social media post like this to be seen as obstructing the police? Could someone be jeopardizing a life? Or could social media posts like this have a corrective influence on drivers, preventing them from driving by letting them know that police are proactively out and about?

We’ll be watching Social Media, impaired drivers may find themselves pulled over on alternate routes skirting around a Roadblock.

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