Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Brace yourself for another "No Refusal" weekend

Here's a preview of NHTSA's anti-drunk driving campaign for the holiday season.  I don't have any specific dates for when the enforcement campaign will be put in place in Texas, but rest assured there will be another "No Refusal" weekend over New Year's.

If you are stopped on suspicion of driving while intoxicated on New Year's Eve, you will be asked to submit a breath sample on the state's breath test machine.  Should you refuse, a judge will sign a warrant for a forced blood draw.  While the results of these tests can be challenged on both scientific and legal grounds, the process can be both humiliating and painful.

Warren Diepraam, the head of Harris County's Vehicular Crimes section, described the genesis of the "No Refusal" Weekend in this article published on the Texas District and County Attorney's Association website.

The question is, should you refuse the breath test if asked on a "No Refusal" Weekend?  My colleague Mark Bennett provided this advice and I can't say that I disagree with him.

My advice, as always, is the best way to avoid being arrested for driving while intoxicated is not to drive if you've been drinking.  But, if you are arrested for DWI, contact my office immediately.

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