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San Antonio Criminal Defense Blog

What happens if you blow less than 0.08 on a breathalyzer?

In every state, a blood alcohol level of 0.08 is the standard police use to determine if someone is driving while under the influence of alcohol. However, it was not always set at 0.08. In the past, some states had it at 1.0 or even 1.5. Some groups even insist the limit needs to go even lower to further reduce drunk driving

With a limit in place, it is understandable some people would assume if you have a BAC less than 0.08, you will not face arrest. On the contrary, there have been instances of police arresting people for having a BAC less than 0.08. 

Texas vehicle stop leads to discovery of 272 pounds of marijuana

A trooper that pulled a vehicle over on Nov. 1 in Texas for a minor traffic violation discovered 272 pounds of marijuana, according to media reports. The Texas Department of Public Safety reports that the 33-year-old Bishop man that was behind the wheel of the vehicle and his 35-year-old female passenger were both taken into custody on drug possession charges and transported to a detention facility in Hidalgo County following the discovery.

The state trooper that made the stop says that he pulled over the white Chevrolet pickup truck at approximately 5:46 p.m. because its window tint appeared to be darker than the 25 percent allowed under state law. The trooper says that he asked for permission to search the vehicle after the driver showed signs of nervousness and uncertainty when questioned. The request to conduct a vehicle search was denied, but a subsequent records check is said to have revealed that the man was driving with a suspended driver's license.

Fetty Wap facing drunk driving charges

People in Texas who are fans of Fetty Wap, the rapper who rose to prominence with his single, "Trap Queen," might be interested in learning that he was recently charged with drunk driving. According to news sources, the incident happened in New York City on Nov. 3.

Officers with the New York City Police Department allege that Fetty Wap was spotted driving his vehicle in a drag race at speeds of more than 100 miles per hour. The speed limit was reportedly marked at 50 miles per hour. Officers pulled over his 2015 Mercedes on the Gowanus Expressway in Brooklyn.

How race plays a role in the justice system

If a person in Texas or anywhere else in America accepts a plea, it may mean reduced penalties compared to being found guilty at trial. However, accepting a plea also means that a person has a criminal conviction on his or her record. It also may mean dealing with other consequences that come with a criminal record or spending time on probation. Furthermore, research suggests that race may play a role in what type of plea terms are offered.

A study analyzed 30,807 misdemeanor cases in Wisconsin over a period of seven years in which a plea was offered. White defendants were 74 percent more likely to have charges that could send them to jail reduced or dismissed altogether. Even among those who had no criminal records, white defendants were likely to get better deals than black defendants.

6 Texas men arrested in marijuana bust

Six Texas residents have been taken into custody on suspicion of running a marijuana grow house operation. The arrests occurred in Fort Bend and Harris counties.

According to local media accounts, three Houston men, ages 37, 35 and 27, were taken into custody in Fort Bend County. They have been charged with second-degree felony possession of marijuana. Three other defendants were apprehended in Harris County. They were charged with delivery of a controlled substance and felony possession of marijuana.

Dallas to implement cite and release marijuana policy

Efforts to decriminalize recreational marijuana use have failed to gain much traction in Texas at the state level, but some localities are taking steps of their own to reduce the burden on the courts and allow law enforcement to concentrate on more serious crimes. Starting on Dec. 1, police in Dallas will be implementing a cite and release policy that changes the way that individuals found to be in possession of less than four ounces of the drug are treated. Instead of being arrested and taken to jail, they will be issued a citation and released pending a court date.

The Dallas cite and release policy does not change the penalties for marijuana possession, and individuals cited under the program will still face up to 180 days in jail and up to a $2,000 fine. However, they will no longer have to deal with the consequences of being arrested such as missing work, having their vehicles impounded and spending time in a holding cell.

Drug possession arrests skyrocket with little positive effect

Each year, many Texans are arrested for possessing drugs. While the Department of Justice has announced a renewed focus on drug crimes, arrests had not fallen off before the current administration. One consistent theme with drug possession arrests is that they do not help to curb drug abuse and actually cause more social problems.

According to the FBI, 1.57 million drug arrests were made around the country in 2016, which was an increase of 5.63 percent over the previous year. Of the drug arrests, 41 percent involved marijuana and 84.6 percent were simple possession offenses.

Disorderly conduct, assault and battery

Assault and battery are serious crimes in the United States. According to data from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, over 20 people suffer abuse each minute in the country. 

Many people use battery and assault interchangeably. Some people even get disorderly conduct confused with the two. It is vital to understand these key differences

Pilot sentenced to 3 years for transporting drugs in plane

On Sept. 22, it was reported that a Texas pilot who pleaded guilty to drug charges was sentenced to three years in federal prison. The Department of Justice said that the Austin pilot was caught transporting at least 200 pounds of marijuana from Oregon to Texas.

Investigators with Homeland Security were reportedly given a tip regarding the pilot's suspicious activities in March after he attempted to land at a Bulverde airport that was not manned. Investigators found that the plane left from Medford, Oregon, and only stopped to refuel in Arizona before arriving in Texas. The man then attempted to land a second time at the Bulverde airport before departing again when he reportedly noticed the presence of authorities who were waiting for him. He eventually landed at Llano Municipal airport. He then reportedly attempted to flee but was quickly detained by the authorities.

Murder rate on the rise in several cities

Texas residents may have heard that for two years in a row, violent crime, including murder, has increased in the United States according to FBI data. However, a closer look at the statistics reveals that the increase is largely concentrated in a few cities.

Between 2015 and 2016, around 20 percent of the increase occurred in Chicago. There were 468 murders in Chicago in 2015 and 765 in 2016. There were also large increases in Las Vegas and Baltimore. Small towns had an increase in murders as well, but it was 8 percent compared to the 20 percent jump in cities. These figures follow several years of a historically low crime rate and still are significantly lower than the rate during part of the 1990s.