Texas First State to Implement No Refusal Policy
Houston car accident attorneys know that the drunk driving statistics for Texas are staggering. Texas leads the nation when it comes to drunk driving fatalities, making it the deadliest state in the union for DWI accidents. Texas has passed several statues and implemented several protocols to try to decrease the number of DWI accidents, with only partial success. No Refusal Weekend is an aggressive state-wide procedure where officers across the state will work together to begin to halt the pervasive drunk driving problem that plagues Texas.
A “No Refusal Weekend” is being tested as a platform that if successful, may eventually be incorporated into Texas law. It means that anyone officer pull over for suspicion of drunk driving cannot refuse a Breathalyzer, and if they do, a judge will issue a warrant for a blood test. Tarrant County Assistant District Attorney Richard Alpert said that it is necessary to have judges on hand to issue warrants for blood tests because a full 50% of people arrested on suspicion of drunk driving refuse Breathalyzer tests.
More than 200 agencies are taking part in the weekend program because it is effective, and because state-wide enforcement is necessary for the program to be most effective. “Everybody is jumping on board because it works, because its legal, because it’s efficient,” Alpert said. “Its about truth and finding out what the truth is, and everybody who’s tried it has liked it and wants to do it again.”
The Texas District & County Attorney’s Association supports the No Refusal policy, partially because of what they term the “CSI effect”. This is when jurors have a glamorized view of the evidence that is needed to prosecute in a DWI case. A blood test is more powerful and believable if a case does ever go to a jury trial, than is a Breathalyzer test. Many DWI suspect also refuse to provide a scientific or chemical sample to law enforcement officers upon request, which leads to significant problems in ensuring justice and that DWI offenders do not have to opportunity to commit the same offence multiple times.
Texas is taking drunk driving offenses so seriously because they are so prevalent, so damaging and deadly, and entirely preventable. Texas also leads the nation in drunk driving fatalities, and would like to pass that title onto another state.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a drunk driving accident, call Houston car accident lawyer Joe Stephens today at 713.224.0000 for a free consultation. Joe Stephens is an experienced Houston injury lawyer who has been serving the south Texas community for over 26 years. Alternatively, you may fill out a contact form online and a member of The Stephens Law Firm staff will contact you within 24 hours to set up a free consultation.