AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Austin Police Department made 75 DWI-related arrests during a 16-day timespan as part of its holiday “No Refusal” initiative. Running from Dec. 17-Jan. 1, the program permitted officers to access blood search warrants for drivers suspected of impaired driving who refuse to provide either a breath or blood sample.
Of the 75 DWI-related arrests, 31 resulted in enhanced DWI charges based on the following factors:
- Consent breath samples over 0.15: 19 arrests
- Class A misdemeanor DWI (prior conviction): 7 arrests
- Felony DWI (two or more prior convictions): 4 arrests
- Felony child passenger: 1 arrest
During 2020, APD hosted a 17-day enforcement period and arrested 119 people for DWI-related charges. In 2019, APD’s “No Refusal” holiday stint ran for 23 days and resulted in a total of 274 arrests.
The program has traditionally run during the holidays and special events, but is now in effect four days a week this fiscal year following increased budget funding, officials with the Austin Transportation Department previously told KXAN.