HOUSTON (FOX 26) - Law enforcement officers will be out in force this World Series weekend to try to keep drunk drivers off the road. There will be celebrations all across the city all weekend as we watch the Houston Astros in the World Series but plenty of eyes will also be on drivers. Officers will be out, saturating not just downtown Houston but throughout the Houston area during this no-refusal weekend, cracking down on drunk drivers.
As you enjoy plenty of parties during World Series weekend, consider this: FOX 26 News stopped by one of Krysta’s Karing Angels training facilities and what was on display was unreal, although seeing the destruction only tells part of the story.
“Emily was killed in this red pickup truck six months before her high school graduation," explains Mark Rodriguez, founder of the non-profit Krysta’s Karing Angels in honor of his 22-year-old daughter Krysta who was killed by a drunk driver. "She was 18 years old. All the vehicles we have belong to victims. The only criminal vehicle we have is the Volkswagen Beetle that killed a 37-year-old Houston police officer Kevin Will.” Emily was also a huge Astros fan.
Rodriguez showed cars that are clearly destroyed but not nearly as much as the lives left devastated after the drunk driving wrecks.
“We just had to rearrange, we had to rearrange our whole outlook on our family as a unit after my daughter was killed,” Rodriguez told FOX 26 as he choked back tears. “Her death didn’t need to happen. It was a crime”.
Rodriguez is thankful that Friday, Saturday and Sunday is a no-refusal weekend. Anyone stopped and suspected of driving while intoxicated has to submit to a Breathalyzer or blood draw.
“When an individual refuses to provide a specimen of his breath or blood, the officers will go to the District Attorney, get a search warrant drafted," describes Chief of the Harris County District Attorney's Office Vehicular Crimes Unit Sean Teare. "A judge will then sign that search warrant and the nurse will be right there to take that individual’s blood.”
“An individual’s blood alcohol concentration dissipates over time," adds Teare, explaining that the process normally could take hours. "Time is of the essence.”
Teare recommends you simply make a phone call and arrange a ride home if you’re planning to drink alcohol.
“In today’s day and age, there are so many other options," says Teare. "You have Uber, Lyft, Yellow Cab, METRO, light rail, designated drivers. Have a plan to get home safely because as we’re telling you we have a plan to catch you if you don’t."
"You have to make the right choice," adds Rodriguez. "Drunk driving is not an accident, it’s a choice.”
Celebrate, have fun and don’t drink and drive.