Texas DWI Defense Attorney Explains No Refusal Days

Much of the time, Texas drivers may refuse to participate in roadside Breathalyzer testing during a traffic stop that has turned into a DWI investigation. Drivers should know that refusing to take the Breathalyzer test at any time will result in license suspension and that license suspension must be addressed immediately if you wish to try to preserve your driving privileges. A driver’s to take the Breathalyzer, on most days, gives the prosecution one less piece of information that they can use to build their case against the driver. However, is essential that Texas drivers understand that there are certain periods of time during which refusing to take a Breathalyzer test will have other consequences besides license suspension, such as automatic arrest and an involuntary blood draw.

Texas has what are called “no refusal” periods during which drivers can be arrested for refusing to take a Breathalyzer test and brought into police custody, where a sample of their blood will be obtained and sent for testing. Holiday weekends are common “no refusal” periods, as are Spring Break and other major events like the SXSW festival. Basically, “no refusal” periods are likely to take place when law enforcement officials predict that there will be a higher number of intoxicated drivers than usual.

Counties have different procedures for taking suspected drunk drivers into custody and obtaining blood samples from them, but it is helpful for drivers to have an idea of what they might expect to happen during a “no refusal” period. The procedure usually begins with a driver’s refusal to take a Breathalyzer test. When that happens, law enforcement officers usually take the driver into custody and bring them to whatever location has been set up as the processing area for DWI suspects. In some counties, hospitals or mobile units serve as processing areas, in other counties, suspects are taken to jail. Since law enforcement officers cannot draw a suspect’s blood without a warrant, there is often a “night judge” on duty and the officers submit their applications for blood draw warrants to the night judge. If the night judge issues a warrant for a blood draw, the sample is then taken from the suspect and sent out for testing.

The best thing that a driver can do during a traffic stop, whether the stop takes place during a “no refusal” period or not, is to remain calm and think carefully before acting or speaking. It is possible, although not always easy, to provide very little information beyond the documentation that is required while remaining respectful.

Any driver could be stopped by the police at any time, and during “no refusal” periods, there are more law enforcement officers patrolling the roads than there are at other times. If you have been arrested for DWI, protect your rights by contacting Texas DWI Defense Attorney Jack Pettit, Attorney at Law, right away. Call 214-521-4567 to find out more about how Attorney Pettit may be able to help you with your Texas DWI case.



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