"No Refusal" Blood Tests Could Be On The Way For Ector County DWI Stops 4/2/13
CBS 7 News
April 2, 2013
ECTOR COUNTY-It’s already in place across 70-percent of the counties in Texas, including Midland and Andrews county.
New County Attorney M. Scott Layh says it's past time that Ector joins in.
DWI stops are a growing problem at the county attorney’s office. It handles all misdemeanor DWI offenses.
"With the population increase we have seen an increase in DWI’s,” said M. Scott Layh, Ector County District Attorney.
To fight the trend, Layh says the county needs to implement a "no refusal" blood testing policy. The policy means officers on the scene of a DWI stop will get warrants from judges remotely--allowing an on-call medical professional to draw blood from drivers on scene.
Layh says the change is past due - no one in the county pushed for the policy in the past.
"There's no excuse for us not to have this policy in place,” said Layh. “We have the technology and we have a problem with DWI's"
By taking blood at the scene --- Layh says his office will be able to prosecute more DWI cases.
"We’re serious about going forward and want to make sure we put a stop to DWI’s as much as we can in Ector County.”
It’s not yet clear how much getting the policy started will cost -- but most programs pass on the cost of the blood tests to offenders.
Layh says the county still has to work out a plan for implementation here in the county -- but hopes that the blood tests can begin by the end of this year.