SAN MARCOS, Texas (KXAN) - Hays County was conducting their first ever "no refusal" weekend to crack down on drunk driving. The very first case brought the whole operation to an end.
Judge Bill Henry refused to sign a warrant for a blood test, saying legally he couldn't because the man they wanted to test was a friend.
On Monday, KXAN obtained a copy of the San Marcos Police squad car video from a traffic stop that turned into this unexpected problem.
A minor car crash in downtown San Marcos the night of August 30th led police to give an eye test to one of the drivers. He backed into a car on Hopkins Street.
Police suspected he was driving drunk. Officers said the man's breath smelled of alcohol and he was unsteady on his feet and his speech was slurred.
The video from the police cruiser shows the man refusing the field sobriety test. The man said he was a Texan and was not willing to perform the test, the incident report stated.
"I'm not gonna do a dog and pony show for you," he said.
Officers then arrested and handcuffed him. In the back of the cruiser, officers proceeded to ask him to comply.
"I am now requesting a specimen of your breath," said an officer.
"No sir," the man replied.
"Will you do blood?" asked the officer.
"No, I'm not gonna do any of that crap," said the man.
"I'll be writing up a blood search warrant," said the officers, "And will take it to a judge, and then we'll take blood."
"Which judge are you taking it to?" asked the man.
"It's Judge Henry," said the officer,
"I know Bill," the man said.
And--Judge Bill Henry knows him. The man police arrested is an attorney in San Marcos.
The police report says Judge Henry refused to sign the warrant because he knew the man in question, and it went on to say he had attended an event with him earlier that day.
San Marcos Police Chief Howard Williams helped explain.
"That's a tenant of the code of judicial ethics. You can't be involved with friends, family, business partners, associates," Chief Williams said.
Chief Williams says Judge Henry was the only judge available to sign a warrant that evening. The attorney was released and not charged. Chief Williams says without the tests officers didn't have probable cause to put the man in jail.
Hays County ended up having to scrap the entire "no-refusal" weekend due to this 'conflict of interest.'
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