Drunken-driving cases jeopardized as courts toss blood draws

AUSTIN, Texas - Some motorists facing a third or fourth drunken driving conviction in Texas could have their latest charges cleared following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that mostly barred police from drawing blood without a warrant.

The Austin American-Statesman reported Sunday that prosecutors in Austin have at least 17 arrests from 2013 or earlier that are in jeopardy as those cases move through appeals courts. Judges have begun suppressing results from blood alcohol tests for lack of a warrant.

Court records show that blood tests obtained without a warrant have also been tossed in Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Fort Worth and El Paso.

Travis County Assistant District Attorney Angie Creasy said the 2013 ruling from the Supreme Court was a "game changer." Prosecutors are now counting on other evidence to convict.