Intoxication

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Intoxication

Postby croc870 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:39 pm

Doesn't look like it's been noticed yet ( probably because it's subject tagged under weapons rather than CHL), but Van Taylor prefiled his intoxication clarification bill yesterday. HB 153

http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=HB153
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Re: Intoxication

Postby RoyGBiv » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:44 pm

From the text of the bill
(18)AA"Intoxicated" has the meaning assigned by Section 49.01.


And PC49.01
Worth noting that this section of PC is related to:

TITLE 10. OFFENSES AGAINST PUBLIC HEALTH, SAFETY, AND MORALS
CHAPTER 49. INTOXICATION AND ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE OFFENSES

(2) "Intoxicated" means:

(A) not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties by reason of the introduction of alcohol, a controlled substance, a drug, a dangerous drug, a combination of two or more of those substances, or any other substance into the body; or

(B) having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more.
I am not a lawyer. This is NOT legal advice.!
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Re: Intoxication

Postby WildBill » Wed Nov 14, 2012 6:31 pm

Interesting. I wonder if it will get voted into law. :thumbs2:
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Re: Intoxication

Postby Oldgringo » Wed Nov 14, 2012 6:54 pm

WildBill wrote:Interesting. I wonder if it will get voted into law. :thumbs2:


Public intoxication has been pretty much frowned on as long as I can remember. Is this good or bad news?
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Re: Intoxication

Postby AJSully421 » Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:05 am

That last part always bothered me. "or any other substance". As far fetched as it is, I have often wondered if an officer pulls someone over who is driving erratically and that driver states that they have had 5 Red Bulls and that they are driving erratically because of the caffeine... is it conceivable that driver could be arrested and charged with DWI? Based on "any other substance" I do not see why not.

I am not brilliant legal scholar, but I do not like the change as proposed. Simply because we go from requiring "Substantial impairment" to "not having normal use" of your faculties to meet the definition. I don't know about you... but I would rather the state be required to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that I was "Substantially impaired" rather than I did not have "normal use" of my faculties. Seems like splitting hairs, but I was on a jury for a DWI that resulted in a conviction. He refused a specimen test, but the dash cam clearly showed that he did not have normal use... but he was only a little impaired in my opinion and if that case had required "substantial impairment", there is no way we would have found him guilty. Just one example.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby MeMelYup » Thu Nov 29, 2012 8:23 am

AJSully421 wrote:That last part always bothered me. "or any other substance". As far fetched as it is, I have often wondered if an officer pulls someone over who is driving erratically and that driver states that they have had 5 Red Bulls and that they are driving erratically because of the caffeine... is it conceivable that driver could be arrested and charged with DWI? Based on "any other substance" I do not see why not.

I am not brilliant legal scholar, but I do not like the change as proposed. Simply because we go from requiring "Substantial impairment" to "not having normal use" of your faculties to meet the definition. I don't know about you... but I would rather the state be required to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that I was "Substantially impaired" rather than I did not have "normal use" of my faculties. Seems like splitting hairs, but I was on a jury for a DWI that resulted in a conviction. He refused a specimen test, but the dash cam clearly showed that he did not have normal use... but he was only a little impaired in my opinion and if that case had required "substantial impairment", there is no way we would have found him guilty. Just one example.

Depends on the interpretation/definition of "substantial" and "not having normal use".
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Re: Intoxication

Postby Moby » Thu Nov 29, 2012 8:40 am

AJSully421 wrote: He refused a specimen test, but the dash cam clearly showed that he did not have normal use... but he was only a little impaired in my opinion and if that case had required "substantial impairment", there is no way we would have found him guilty. Just one example.



But by your own admission he was intoxicated enough that you knew it from a video of his behavior.
Wouldn't this mean he would have most assuridly blown a breath test? I believe the law id being rewritten to
allow for evidence to be entered that can clearly show intooxication from some sustance without giving the driver a way to avoid prosecution be avoiding a test.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby WildBill » Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:23 am

AJSully421 wrote:That last part always bothered me. "or any other substance". As far fetched as it is, I have often wondered if an officer pulls someone over who is driving erratically and that driver states that they have had 5 Red Bulls and that they are driving erratically because of the caffeine... is it conceivable that driver could be arrested and charged with DWI? Based on "any other substance" I do not see why not.
Yes, Red Bull, cough syrup, NoDoz, OTC allergy pills, and well as drugs presribed by a doctor.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby Skiprr » Thu Nov 29, 2012 12:05 pm

It doesn't look to me as if this proposed bill changes anything other than making certain PC §46 references the definition of "intoxicated" as presented in PC §49...which is where I believe everyone--judges, attorneys, and non-attorneys alike--already look for clarification. The definition in PC §46.06 is superfluous and incomplete. PC §49.01 defines what "alcohol concentration" means, and presents the clear definition of "intoxicated"...including the very important (and often misunderstood) conjunction "or" that joins PC §49.01(2)(A) and §49.01(2)(B).

I'd support this bill. I'm all for steps that normalize the statutes, making them less ambiguous by consolidating definitions into single sources.

A follow-on to note what's been said many times in the past: there simply is no reasonable way to remove the seemingly subjective statement: "...not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties by reason of the introduction of...any...substance into the body." There simply is no way to test for everything that someone could conceivably put into his body, or predict what new things might be devised in the future to ingest or inject. And what would otherwise be innocuous amounts of several different substances can, if taken together, cause impairment equal to or greater than one of those substances taken in quantity.

What the definition in PC §49.01does do is make it clear that intoxication requires the introduction of a substance into the body. Naturally occurring conditions that might look symptomatic of intoxication don't count: think of someone going into diabetic shock or suffering a seizure. For example, I had a friend who passed away several years ago from ALS. His earliest symptom was slurred speech. Took weeks to diagnose, and for the first several months, the slurred speech was the only issue: his mind, other motor operations, reflexes, etc. were just fine. He continued to go to work every day and go to the gym after work. But if he'd been pulled over for a traffic stop, he'd have had some 'splainin' to do. He kept a letter from his doctor in the car, just in case.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby Maxwell » Thu Nov 29, 2012 1:19 pm

And unless I am mistaken this now makes the definition of intoxication consistant with that for DWI/DUI.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby WildBill » Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:52 pm

Maxwell wrote:And unless I am mistaken this now makes the definition of intoxication consistant with that for DWI/DUI.

I think this is the purpose of the bill.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby Maxwell » Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:03 pm

I agree Wild Bill.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby hillfighter » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:15 pm

RoyGBiv wrote:From the text of the bill
(18)AA"Intoxicated" has the meaning assigned by Section 49.01.

It looks like this adds 0.08% BAC as proof of intoxication, even if the person is not visibly impaired. It doesn't create any new offenses or penalties if someone doesn't consent to a BAC test, so I don't object to the change.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby Keith B » Sun Dec 23, 2012 6:24 pm

WildBill wrote:
Maxwell wrote:And unless I am mistaken this now makes the definition of intoxication consistant with that for DWI/DUI.

I think this is the purpose of the bill.

The issue is that the section 46.06 UNLAWFUL TRANSFER OF CERTAIN WEAPONS was the only place in TPC 46 that had a definition for Intoxication. The term 'Intoxicated/intoxication' should have always been referenced to TPC49.01 for any other section of TPC 46, but with that definition in there it could have easily been misconstrued that this was a 'higher standard' for carrying weapons and applied to all of TOC 46. By making the change it eliminates any possible misinterpretation and references the proper section for the definition.
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Re: Intoxication

Postby Ameer » Sun Dec 23, 2012 6:29 pm

If this passes, I hope DPS will change their lesson plan to teach the law.
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