Austin police ended their “No Refusal” weekend crackdown at 5am Tuesday morning. During this event 106 individuals were arrested for driving while intoxicated. During the initiative, officers were allowed a warrant to take a suspect’s blood if they refused a breathalyzer test. Out of the 106 arrests, 60% of suspects refused the breath test and were subsequently forced to have blood drawn for blood alcohol content analysis.
Because of the implemented “No Refusal” weekends in Texas, it is important to understand your rights and the severity of a possible DWI conviction. During normal DWI stops, you can refuse a breathalyzer test, it is your right. If an officer feels you are intoxicated, he or she must take you to a separate locale and await a warrant to have your blood drawn in order to determine your BAC. During a “No Refusal” weekend such as Labor Day, an officer can simply order you take a blood test. Your rights essentially have been condensed, opening you up to possible steep charges which can result in damaging penalties, fines, and\or jail time.
Unfortunately, the popularity among law enforcement of these types of initiatives does not allow for much chance of exoneration. Because the warrant is easily obtain and because of the assumption you may have been drinking on a holiday weekend, a judge and jury may have a preconceived notion of your guilt.
Though these cases are harder to defend in court, it is important that if you have been arrested as a result of a “No Refusal” holiday initiative, to contact an attorney who is intimately familiar with Texas DWI laws and your rights. Remember that even if you have been charged with a DWI as a result of a “No Refusal” initiative, there is still hope. A knowledgeable attorney can present evidence and circumstances that can lessen your charges and get you a fair trial. I invite you to contact the attorney’s at the Martinez Law Firm; we will fight hard to ensure you receive the best possible outcome in your DWI case.