July 4th — the “No Refusal” Holiday
As the Fourth of July looms, counties across Texas are preparing for another “No Refusal” week(end). What this means for drivers arrested for Driving While Intoxicated is that even if you refuse a breath or a blood test, an officer may very likely seek a warrant for your blood.
Texas has what is called the “implied consent” law. Don’t remember this from your driver’s education handbook? That’s not unusual – most people don’t. What this means is that as part of your agreement with the State to receive your driver’s license, you impliedly consent to give a breath or a blood test if requested by an officer if you are suspected of DWI. Of course, you can refuse, but be aware that carries with it some penalties, including the suspension of your license and the fact that your refusal may be used as evidence against you in a court of law.
On a “No Refusal” weekend, officers have judges standing by, ready to sign off on warrants to take your blood if you refuse a breath or blood test. Officers are required to provide sufficient information for a judge to make a finding of probable cause from the face of the warrant. Do errors sometimes happen? Of course. An attorney will be able to later examine that warrant to see if all the proper protocol was followed, and if not, to try to suppress that evidence (meaning it can’t be used against you in court). But if the warrant is solid and protocol was followed, the State may have another piece of evidence against you.
So if you’re planning on being out on the road this July 4th holiday, be prepared. Have a designated driver, hire a cab, or if you find yourself in handcuffs, contact us as soon as possible so we can start working on your case.