Dennis Farris

Austin Police Department arrested 50 people during the Halloween “No Refusal” weekend.

APD implemented the policy for Friday and Saturday nights, from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m., expecting large crowds. Of those arrested, 24 provided breath samples and 21 required blood search warrants, APD senior police officer Dennis Farris said. There were also four mandatory blood draws, and one person consented to a blood draw.

Farris said nearly 82 percent of the breath samples from Saturday showed alcohol contents over the legal limit of .08 and that APD will receive the blood test results in about a week.

“No Refusal” began on Halloween 2008 and allows officers to draw blood samples, with a warrant signed by an on-call judge, to test for intoxication during high alcohol consumption nights if a suspect refuses to provide a blood or breath sample. APD obtained 26 search warrants during the 2008 weekend and 29 the year after.

APD is not trying discouraging drinking, but drunken driving, Farris said.

“Get a designated driver or take a cab,” he said. “A cab is much cheaper than a DWI arrest.”
 

News Briefly

Austin police are investigating the city’s 30th murder that occurred late Sunday night near Riverside Drive and Pleasant Valley Road.

At about 10:11 p.m., officers were dispatched to the crime scene because of a disturbance involving two males during which one male stabbed the other, said APD senior police officer Dennis Farris. The victim was pronounced dead at 10:38 p.m.

Police arrested the suspect near the crime scene shortly after talking to witnesses. Farris said both the suspect and victim appear to be transients and that police will not release any further information because the investigation is ongoing.