You’ve probably heard the announcements on the radio or driven past road signs declaring it is a ‘No Refusal Weekend,’ but do you actually know what that means? In the state of Texas, the justice system takes DWIs very seriously. These weekends are the result of collaboration between judges and police officers to speed up the process of convicting someone of a DWI.
Expect No Refusal during major holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s and during any major events like the Super Bowl. If you are pulled over during a No Refusal Weekend and the officer believes you have been drinking the officer will call a magistrate or judge they have on call to obtain a warrant for your breathe or blood sample. The samples obtained can then be used as evidence during a trial.
Per state law the officer can do this because “there is probable cause to believe the motorist is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, then the judge quickly issues a search warrant for the sample (Tex. Transp. Code 724.011(a), 724.012(b), 724).”
The goal of speeding up this process is to catch drivers with the highest blood alcohol concentration. In Texas, a BAC of 0.08 is legally intoxicated. Where many people become confused is the No Refusal part. During these weekends, you can initially refuse the officer’s request. What changes this is once the cop gets a warrant there are consequences for refusing after that.
It is important to know your rights and responsibilities before you find yourself in a compromising situation. It is always a better idea to not drive after you have been drinking. If you have questions or find yourself in need of a criminal defense attorney call us at (713) 225-0650.