Well, this seems to be becoming a common trend. Just as I earlier pointed out in Florida, they are also doing the “No Refusal” DUI stops in Texas.
What I find particularly amusing is that these only took place on Weekends. So does that mean that weekday DUI stops are not as important? I personally think it is so the Judge who has to be on-site (plus the cops) can then make more money on overtime.
What a waste. IMO, DUI stops are unconstitutional (there is no probable cause to stop everyone….so illegal search) and the fact that MADD sponsors or “assists” in these shows that this is really fringe organizations taking over public service (nobody pays attention to this, yet if a group get together and form a militia…the media is all over it). For an interesting read on MADD and how the operate/skew statistics….skip over to Modern Drunkard Magazine (and how could you not love a smoking and drinking monkey in a fez?).
Here is the article from Texas. It should be retitled- You can’t kill our Cash Cow.
'No Refusal' Weekend Program To Exist Year-Round
SAN ANTONIO -- Bexar County District Attorney Susan Reed announced plans this week to extend "No Refusal" weekends to every weekend in 2011 as opposed to certain holiday weekends, like New Year's and the Fourth of July.
The move to extend the program drew positive words from Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
"We're pretty excited about that," said Daniel Garza, youth program specialist with MADD. "It was a great pleasure to hear that this morning that law enforcement is going to get another good tool to be able to combat drunk driving here in San Antonio."
With an estimated 6,000 drunken driving arrests in Bexar county for 2010, MADD feels the program will cut down on arrests in 2011.
"When they're announced and everyone knows that they're coming, they serve as a deterrent," Garza said. "It would be a great pleasure to see it become 365 days."
But criminal lawyers who handle DWI cases see it differently.
"I guess the message they're sending is, 'Get drunk during the week,'" said Jamie Balagia, a lawyer who goes by "DWI Dude".
"They're saying, 'You give us a breath specimen or you give us a blood specimen or we're going to take it anyway,'" George Scharmen, a criminal defense lawyer.
Scharmen said with the district attorney's refusal to take plea bargains in DWI cases, the new policy won't do anything but stretch out cases. He said he has some cases that have waited five years to get to court.
"You have motions to suppress breath and blood draws on the basis of a bad search warrant, on the basis of involuntariness," Scharmen said.
"If they don't have enough evidence against you to make a solid case, how is what little they have enough for a judge to sign a warrant?" added Balagia.
Reed's office released statistics from nine No Refusal weekends between May 2008 and the Fourth of July weekend in 2010. The stats showed that 312 blood tests were taken with an average blood alcohol level of 0.159, nearly twice the legal limit. Twenty-nine of the tests were below the legal limit.
"If you have a special program, there should be a goal and a goal that you can actually show statistically that there's benefit," Balagia said. "Susan Reed can't do that."
"The implication is that on the No Refusal weekend they have a tendency to get more convictions or they have a tendency to get better evidence," Scharmen said.