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Tuesday, September 3, 2013 - 1:22pm
El Paso, TX (KDBC) — A slew of state laws went into effect on Sunday, one of them could affect how blood is drawn when police suspect a driver is intoxicated.
The new law states that paramedics can draw blood from a DWI suspect, if an officer asks, to determine the driver's blood alcohol content.
A blood draw, in this instance, would still require a search warrant from a judge and probable cause from the officer on the scene.
El Paso Police said this isn't something that you'll see any time soon in El Paso or El Paso County.
"We have a system in place that's been working for us," said El Paso Police Public Information Officer Sgt. Chris Mears. "We use the jail nurse in the booking jail or if the person was injured in an accident, transported to the hospital, obviously there's medical staff at the hospital that are able to do it for us. So we're not sure if it's something that we're going to utilize, but it is something that we're looking at".
The El Paso jail has a full time nurse, who can draw blood.
El Paso Police said there would need to be an agreement between the police and fire department were they to start asking EMT's to start testing blood for alcohol content.