Criminal District Attorney Jack Roady announced today
that a total of two DWI arrests were processed through the No Refusal
operations conducted county-wide during New Year’s Eve.
This is a decrease
over the last two years. A total of nine No Refusal DWI arrests were made
during New Year’s Eve in 2014, while five arrests were made in 2013.
This significant decrease is largely due to the fact that four drivers consented to
providing either breath or blood samples. Additionally, in one case the arresting
officer opted to use the STRIKE program to facilitate obtaining a search warrant
for a blood sample. The STRIKE program stands for “Safety Through Rapid
Investigation of Key Evidence” and was initiated in Galveston County in the
last year. Under the STRIKE program, an officer may telecommunicate from
the crime scene with a judge, via the internet; the officer can apply for a search
warrant to obtain an intoxicated driver’s blood sample. The judge can then
review the search warrant application, make a probable cause determination,
and then transmit the signed warrant back to the officer for further action.
As the STRIKE program becomes more widely available for all agencies in
Galveston County, use of the traditional No Refusal programs will continue to
decrease. The District Attorney’s Office is working with local judges and law
enforcement agencies to make the STRIKE program available to all officers as
quickly as possible. Once implemented countywide, the STRIKE program will
allow officers to obtain search warrants for blood samples 24 hours a day, 365
days a year.