Arrests during APD no-refusal event increase by two New Year's Eve

During a no-refusal event New Year's Eve, the Austin Police Department took more than two dozen suspected drunk drivers off the road.

A ball drop along 6th street, followed by confetti and the traditional kiss rang in 2015 but not too far away, there was also a less festive crowd at APD's breath alcohol test bus.

Officers warned that they would conduct a no refusal initiative for the holiday meaning they would get warrants to draw blood for those refusing a breath test.

"We want to make sure that its known loud and clear that if you're going to make the poor decision to operate a motor vehicle while you're intoxicated, we're going to be out looking for you and were going to arrest you and put you in jail," said Corporal David Boyd with the Austin Police Violent Crime unit.

26 people were caught not heeding that warning. Of those, 12 people consented to a breath test, 2 requested a blood test and police obtained warrants to take the blood of 12 others.

The statistics were up by two this year. Last year, APD made 24 arrests. One of the arrest this year was made by Chief Art Acevedo.

He spoke publicly about the situation via Twitter saying quote "Hard to understand why folks commit DWI this day and age, especially with two small children in the car. Please don't DWI, we need to be safe."

He also tweeted he was thankful the department ended the holiday without any loss of life.

Hopefully it's a good public education message that we're getting out is that we're getting out there, we're looking for you, we're using every legal method available to us to make sure that we catch these people and prosecute them. We're hoping people just make the good decision and find a designated driver or stay sober and don't drink at all," Boyd said.

The person arrested by Chief Acevedo is identified as 33-year-old Jose Sanchez.

Drinking and driving with a child passenger is a felony charge.

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