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NYPD Looks Into Speeding Up DWI Tests

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Top brass within the city's police department are looking into ways to shorten the time it takes to get blood alcohol tests after a suspected drunk driver refuses a breath test.

The panel's formation comes after two recent fatal drunk driving accidents involving off-duty cops. Both refused to take Breathalyzers. In the latest incident last Friday, nearly five hours passed, before a court-ordered blood test was taken. Police Commissioner Ray Kelly says it can take even longer:

KELLY: Actually, the average time for all DWI cases when people are taken, they refuse the Breathalyzer and they're taken to a hospital for blood withdrawal, is about seven hours.

REPORTER: Critics say the lag time allows suspects to sober up. Commissioner Kelly says the committee will decide in a week on any changes to the process.

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