Tag Archives: law enforcement

DWI surcharge Houston No refusal weekends

Houston No refusal weekends: What you need to know.

There’s been a lot of talk about Houston No Refusal Weekends trying to increase DWI arrests. No Refusal Weekends are when officers pull you over, suspect that you’re intoxicated and you refuse to take the breath or blood test. The officer then gets a warrant from a judge to “compel” you to take a blood test.

No Refusal Weekends are especially popular during holidays such as St. Patrick’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day and New Year’s Eve.

The Independence Day Weekend in 2015, there were 23 arrests in Fort Bend County alone during a Houston No Refusal Weekend from Friday, July 3rd until Saturday night, July 4th. These efforts are “successful” because they bring together all divisions of law enforcement including Department of Public Safety, county constables, sheriff’s departments and local city police.

Houston No Refusal Weekends are Easy Money

The truth is, DWI No Refusal Weekends make it easy for law enforcement to get evidence that can convict you whether you’ve done anything wrong or not. As criminal defense attorneys specializing in DWI, we know there are problems with the law enforcement administered testing. A lot of problems.

A Breath of Un-fresh Air

First, let’s look at the breath test. These are the most convenient for law enforcement to administer, but one of the most inaccurate. They receive air from the lungs and test it for alcohol saturation. This evidence is, by nature, the most unreliable evidence from a scientific standpoint because the lungs are not where breath alcohol comes from. Breath alcohol comes from the entire air system throughout your body–not just the lungs. This fundamental flaw makes the breath test completely inaccurate. In addition, the samples saved during breath testing in Texas, aren’t preserved so that the test can be validated later.

The Blood Sport of Houston No Refusal Weekends

Second, blood testing, which is thought by many forensic scientists to be the most accurate and reliable means of determining alcohol concentration, is more difficult for police to obtain and analyze. From a law enforcement standpoint, the blood test is the least desirable and least convenient method. However, unlike breath testing, blood testing allows the person who has been arrested the opportunity to re-check the sample at a later time.

The Holidays are coming and that means No-Refusal Weekends. If you’re going to a part or hosting one, read my No-Refusal Weekend Survival Guide.

Blue Lives Matter

In the course of recent events, we’ve heard the media-driven mantras ‘Black Lives Matter’ and ‘All Lives Matter.” Well, police lives matter, too. Thousands of men and women, who have been participating in protests around the country, reveal that there are huge issues of misunderstanding and distrust between police officers and the people they serve.

A reoccurring issue today is the use of force by law enforcement. The use of force is not a question of ‘if’ but ‘when’, and when that moment inevitably arrives, the probability for it to be necessary should not be a surprise. Police split-second decisions generally have permanent consequences. It is impossible to always reach a perfect resolution to manage physical violence and crime. No officer wants to kill, but every officer, just like every military person, must be prepared to take a life in order to save others for self defense. We all know this and ought to support and acknowledge it.

It’s disheartening certain media repeatedly parades certain unrepresentative stories suggesting they are the norm instead of the exception. Of course, these narratives are to boost ratings but not truth. Sadly, they spark foreseeable conflict between police officers and those that they both serve and protect. These off balance stories can recklessly ramp up racism where police officers are being attacked and even assassinated when race was never an issue. These actions are an ‘affront to civil society,’ and in particular to recently deceased Harris County Deputy Darren Goforth, his family, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, and all law enforcement.

If police were construed as more harmful than beneficial, then imagine a society without police or, where police officers refuse to render aid in an area that is openly hostile towards it. What other 24-hour non-military agency would be accessible to provide immediate protection in a time of crisis? What organization would provide immediate relief or aid during a natural disaster or terrorist attack? Who would bring a criminal suspect before our judicial system to deter future crime? Who else has received the proper training to conduct a proper murder investigation so that justice is preserved? Without this accessibility, proper training and dedication police officers provide, it’s unfathomable to know the number of lives that would not be saved or future crimes that would not be deterred.

The overwhelming majority of men and women who have chosen law enforcement have dedicated their lives to the communities they serve and protect. We should continue to highlight the every day bravery that police officers show in our communities. They have put their all on the line 24/7. We as a free people, and in our desire to continue to be a free people, need to support our police. Yes, blue lives matter! Moreover, ALL LIVES AND TRUTH MATTER!

 

The Dangers of DWI No Refusal Weekends in Houston

No Refusal weekends are a new phenomenon coined by law enforcement to advertise that police agencies will ask for a search warrant to seize a blood sample from a driver, if you refuse to take the breath test. The state of Texas allows a driver to refuse a breath or blood test, unless a judge issues a search warrant.

The idea behind DWI No Refusal Weekends is this: law enforcement wants you to make it easy for them to get evidence to convict you if you have done something wrong. However, among the many problems with DWI testing administered by law enforcement, breath test evidence is the most unreliable scientific evidence because it is based upon the theory of getting air from the lungs, and testing it for alcohol saturation. In truth, that is not where breath alcohol comes from. Breath alcohol comes from the entire air system throughout your body–not just the deep lung area making the breath test fundamentally flawed and inaccurate.