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We're about to make our pitch to local LE, and I would like to know what other counties curently employ the practice. As far as I know, Parker, Tarrant, Harris, El Paso, Fort Bend, and Wilson all use blood search warrants, or have at least done a "no-refusal" weekend. Who am I missing?
 
Posts: 62 | Location: Lubbock, TX | Registered: November 20, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Collin County had a "no refusal" operation in the days leading up to New Years eve.
 
Posts: 2129 | Location: McKinney, Texas, USA | Registered: February 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We have done one "no refusal weekend" so far in Waller County. It was/is modeled very closely to Harris County (much smaller scale). I put together a little field manual for the troops but LE so far has been the hardest to get on board on this deal...must be that it is something different...(change=bad, mentality)
 
Posts: 130 | Location: Hempstead, Texas, USA | Registered: March 15, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Scurry County uses blood warrants on all refusals and I love it! We've been doing this for a few years now. At first some in law enforcement were concerned about how it would work, but I haven't heard any complaints since the program was implemented. We were lucky enough to have the cooperation of all our LE agencies, local judges, and hospital ER/lab to make this work. The judges rotate being on call (at home, with a fax machine) and our local hospital staff is trained on the proper way to do the draw. It works great here.

If you have any questions or want some of our forms give me a call at the Scurry Co. DA's office.
 
Posts: 84 | Location: Snyder, Texas | Registered: November 26, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Colorado County, Deaf Smith, Tarrant, Travis, Williamson all have had programs in play for a while.
 
Posts: 293 | Location: Austin, TX, US | Registered: September 12, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You're going to be wondering what took you so long to try it. Once the first cases start coming--you get to try cases other than DWIs. Its a very liberating experience. Razz
 
Posts: 476 | Location: Parker County, Texas | Registered: March 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Our commissioners court even paid for a prosecutor to have a cell phone and be available 24 hours a day to help draft a blood search warrant. We try to get law enforcement to seek a blood sample in all felony DWI refusal cases. It has reduced jury trials, sped up dispositions, and increased the likely punishment.
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We've been doing it a couple of years. It is great! I particularly enjoy the stories from officers handling smug repeat offenders that complain "You can't do that! My lawyer told me to refuse any test."
 
Posts: 233 | Location: Anderson, Texas | Registered: July 11, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Imagine how it would work if every DWI suspect (felony or misdemeanor) was required by statute (as is true in most states) to provide a sample. It would put an end to the misleading claims by defene lawyers that a defendant has a "right" to destroy physical evidence of intoxication. Of course, those lawyers know that the privilege against self incrimination applies to words, not blood. Furthermore, the constitutional protection against an unreasonable search is not violated by a warrantless seizure of blood based upon a probable cause arrest for DWI -- because the delay caused by getting a warrant provides time for the loss of evidence as the body absorbs the alcohol.
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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In Liberty County, it took a while for me to get officers to do blood search warrants on refusals for felonies. But once they started doing it, they really have gotten into it. Our officers now get blood search warrants on all DWIs if there is a refusal. My judges are getting a bit tired of being jolted out a sound sleep but they are still very cooperative as well. If we could just get the results from the DPS lab back sooner, it would be even better. They are apparently just overwhelmed with the workload. We had a "No Refusal" weekend a couple of weeks before Christmas. We jointly sponsored it with our local MADD chapter. Good results and great PR!
 
Posts: 276 | Location: Liberty County, Texas | Registered: July 23, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I am trying to put together some No Refusal Weekend here in Brazos County. I'm in the rough planning stage, but I'll keep reading to try and pick up some pointers.
 
Posts: 3 | Location: Bryan, TX, US | Registered: January 26, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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In Colorado County we do a blood test on all refusal cases and have done so for several years using a fill-in-the-blank search warrantr form that has worked really well. There is a backlog of cases awaiting results from the DPS lab, but it is well worth the wait. It is amazing how high the test results are on DWI 3rd cases.
 
Posts: 1029 | Location: Fort Worth, TX | Registered: June 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The impending problem is the growing delay at DPS labs. We recently were warned that delays could exceed 6 months to a year.

Gee, all this would go away if the Leg would make breath tests mandatory, right?
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The majority of Denton County (DFW metroplex area) agencies do blood warrants, as well. I've asked our cops to do them specifically for:

All felonies (including DWI With Child)

"Total refusals" - Defendant refuses all SFSTs and breath test

Accidents where injuries (which are not serious enough to be SBI and therefore allow for a mandatory draw) occur

Cases where drugs are suspected

We are also planning a No Refusal Weekend for Memorial Day Weekend.

As others have stated, coordination and communication BEFOREHAND with Judges, hospitals, cops, etc. is a necessity.
 
Posts: 115 | Location: Denton, TX, USA | Registered: February 15, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We (Gregg County) had a no refusal weekend for New Years.
 
Posts: 640 | Location: Longview, Texas | Registered: October 10, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This is my first post on this site....

We have had similar "no refusal" weekends here in Montgomery County, although I admittedly have not been a part of them as I'm on day shift now.

quote:
Originally posted by JB:
The impending problem is the growing delay at DPS labs. We recently were warned that delays could exceed 6 months to a year.

Gee, all this would go away if the Leg would make breath tests mandatory, right?


I assume you're being sarcastic. (It's hard to tell with typed dialogue.)

If not, I'd encourage you to spend a weekend with an Intoxilyzer operator to see how it works. Back when I was an Intoxilyzer operator, I came across every inmate trick and con-game known to mankind. You just wouldn't believe how "lawyered-up" and "bar veteran-coached" some of these street drunks can be!

The drunks would routinely pretend to blow really, REALLY hard into the mouthpiece - "I'm trying my best, officer!" - when in reality they were just faking it.

It's like watching your kids try to pull one over on you, and in reality it was pretty funny to watch, except that it was such a waste of your time and resources.

Or - for those *really* experienced DWI frequent flyers - they'll give the first sample and try to watch the readout (or the officer's reaction) to see if they blew over the limit (they almost always do), and then refuse to give the necessary second sample, thereby thwarting the test altogether.

There are no games with blood draws. Smile

Anyhow, good luck to the original poster.
 
Posts: 16 | Location: Montgomery County, Texas | Registered: January 30, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Todd, a marvelous first post. You provide just the kind of timely information that is helpful to prosecutors and law enforcement across the state.

My comment about breath tests was semi-sarcastic. In part because I don't believe the Leg yet has the consensus support to vote for mandatory breath/blood samples in all DWI cases. At this point, though, I do think there is support for expansion of the mandatory breath/blood law for felony DWI's and DWI with Child cases. And that will be my focus next session.

Your observations about faking a breath test are helpful in continuing to push for more resources and laws that require collection of blood samples. But that means we have to do something to address:

(1) the backlog created at crime labs;

(2) the resistance in some hospitals to provide a phlebotomist for drawing the blood sample.

Suggestions, anyone?

[This message was edited by JB on 01-30-08 at .]
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If I'm reading these posts correctly, then the list of cutting-edge counties employing "no refusal" tactics to date includes:

Bell
Bexar
Brazos
Burleson/Washington (21st DA)
Collin
Colorado
Deaf Smith
Denton
El Paso
Ft. Bend
Gregg
Grimes
Harris
Hartley
Hill
Jefferson
Lavaca
Liberty
Lubbock
Lynn
Midland
Montgomery
Nolan/Fisher/Mitchell (32nd DA)
Parker
Polk
San Jacinto
Scurry
Smith
Tarrant
Travis
Waller
Wharton
Williamson
Wilson

Did I miss anyone?

(this has been updated based on subsequent posts; thanks!)

[This message was edited by Shannon Edmonds on 01-20-09 at .]
 
Posts: 2404 | Location: TDCAA | Registered: March 08, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Collin County will be conducting another no-refusal weekend this weekend to coincide with the Super Bowl. We've lengthened the effective time periods to 7:00 p.m.-5:00 a.m. after consulting with our agencies and the Tarrant County DA's Office. We'll be using a fax/email system to communicate with our judges, and we've streamlined the affidavit so that officers can fill in the blanks and complete it in less than 10 minutes. We anticipate 10-20 blood draws from the participating agencies. It's good to see that other counties are pursuing this type of DWI enforcement. It would be good to see a state-wide no-refusal weekend in the near future.
 
Posts: 57 | Location: McKinney, Texas, USA | Registered: February 19, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Shannon,
We're planning one here in Polk County for Memorial Day weekend---although I've already had one of my judges expressing concern about how long it will take DPS to conduct the testing and get us reports. Has anyone who's conducted a no refusal weekend approached DPS about expedited testing? Just wondering.
 
Posts: 293 | Registered: April 03, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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