Travis County DA Jailed for DUI

Things rarely move quickly in the criminal justice system. But when you are the county’s top law enforcement official, like District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg is to Travis County, you may get a little expeditious treatment.

Lehmberg was just arrested for drunk driving last weekend, and less than a week later she has leaded guilty and been sentenced, a process that usually takes weeks or even months. [Read more…]

Lab Backlogs Create Major Delays in DWI Blood-Draw Cases

Blood draws are becoming more and more common across the board in suspected drunk driving cases. Texas cops are getting in the practice of taking “no refusals”, or getting a warrant to draw your blood if you refuse a breath test. But this massive increase in blood evidence is having a serious effect on the crime labs tasked with testing it. Namely, defendants are having to wait for months to have their day in court. [Read more…]

“No Refusal” DWI Blood-Draw Programs Commonplace

Last year, 801 people died in alcohol related traffic fatalities in the state of Texas. This number has climbed over the past several years. In 2009, Texas had the most alcohol related fatalities of any state in the country. These numbers have pushed lawmakers to take more aggressive steps in getting drunk drivers off the road, including mandatory blood draws. [Read more…]

Occupational Licenses in Texas DWI Cases – Too Easy to Get?

The American Statesman in conjunction with KVUE published a story this week on the practice of giving occupational licenses to people accused of drunk driving. This, they seem to suggest, is a mockery of crime and punishment. While they stop short of making an editorial about it or suggesting the procedures change, their wording conveys a sense of displeasure about the system that allows for accused drunk drivers to get behind the wheel. [Read more…]

MADD Pushes for Alcohol Sensing Systems in All Cars

The anti-drunk driving organization, MADD, is pushing for $60 million in federal funding to research technology that would prevent any car from starting if the driver is intoxicated. These goal of such systems standard in all cars, and possibly set at the threshold level of “any” alcohol, are prompting concerns that MADD has veered into being a neo-prohibitionist organization. [Read more…]