Question: What is a "no-refusal" weekend?
Benson Varghese: In Texas, officers have the ability to go get a warrant for your blood, anytime you refuse to provide a sample of your breath or blood. That law exists every day of the year.
On “no-refusal” weekends, local agencies are using grants to bring several key actors in the blood draw process together. They will have a magistrate, readily available to review and sign affidavits for search warrants; they will have phlebotomists or blood draw nurses available on sight at a central location, to draw blood immediately; and that’s all they will be doing for that evening or for that weekend. There will be officers who are dedicated to enforcing driving while intoxicated offenses.
By bringing all these resources together, every police department should be getting blood and getting blood very quickly over those weekends. The purpose is, obviously, that the more informed citizens are that officers are checking for people who are intoxicated, the less likely they will be to get on the roadways. That being said, even on a no-refusal weekend there are situations where blood is not drawn, and again the advice is still going to be to let the officer do their job, get a warrant if they believe that they have enough information to get a warrant and to not consent, even though you know it’s a no-refusal weekend.