Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Austin Police Collect Blood from DUI and DWI Suspects on Halloween


Fall festival festivities (or Halloween, to others) do not just consist of young children ringing on doorbells for free candy while wearing bunny costumes or retrieving apples from a bucket of water in a manner that must be questioned for its hygienic shortcomings. Adults also enjoy this annual evening of ghosts and goblins, and some find it necessary to celebrate with the consumption of an excessive number of alcoholic beverages. Austin police looked to crack down on these revelers when they made the poor decision to get behind the wheel of a car by issuing a "no refusal weekend." Under this policy, drivers suspected of being under the influence have the option of submitting to a breath test or being served a warrant for their blood. In all, twenty-six suspects opted to give up some blood.

Not surprisingly, the "no refusal" policy has been controversial across the state. Advocates who work to decrease the number of drunk drivers on the road applaud any efforts to keep the streets safer. Groups such as the Texas Civil Rights Project find the forced drawing of blood to be invasive and a violation of a suspect's rights. Despite this protest, the Austin police are considering the expansion of the policy to other holiday weekends.

At Bertolino LLP, we certainly discourage everyone from drinking and driving. There are always other options for getting home. However, if you do find yourself accused of this crime, we have defense attorneys who can help. Please contact our Austin, Houston, or San Antonio office today and let us know the situation you are facing.

In closing, I would be remiss if I did not mention the presidential election. Congratulations to President-elect Barack Obama for an impressive victory. Also, a special thank you to Senator John McCain for your hard-fought efforts, dedication, and continued service to our great country. Every four years, Americans are reminded of the great democratic privilege we have of choosing our leader and that is something about which we can all be proud.

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