We usually report on alcohol-related events around the Bryan/College Station area, but we recently heard about a situation elsewhere in Texas that we thought might be worth reporting.

In Forth Worth, a police officer was arrested last week on suspicion of driving drunk. His arrest prompted the chief of police to hold a news conference and articulate a tough stance against drunk driving.

Most significantly, the police chief said any officer against whom a drunk-driving charge is "sustained" by an internal investigation will be dismissed.

We are curious as to what "sustained" means. It is hard to imagine the police department having access to any data other than that which is available to prosecutors. So, unless "sustained" is synonymous only with "convicted," it sounds to us like the chief is saying officers could be fired even if they are found not guilty of driving drunk.

Perhaps we are wrong. It is difficult to accurately crystallize a policy based on one or two sentences. Even so, we think this is something worth paying attention to. As attorneys, we do not condone drunk driving, but we certainly are not any more tolerant of attempts to prematurely convict or punish people, either.

Source: The Brownsville Herald, "Police chief to fire officers caught driving drunk," Jan. 3, 2012

  • The attorneys in our office often assist clients from the Bryan/College Station area who have been accused of driving while intoxicated. If you think it would be helpful to have more information on this line of our work, we invite you to visit the DUI/DWI page of our website.