Texas Prosecutors- DWI and Closing Arguments
Closing arguments are an important part of any jury trial. After both sides present their witnesses and evidence we have closing arguments. The State gets two closing arguments- one before and one after the Defense.
From the TDCAA Publication “DWI Investigation and Prosecution” comes these exiting tips on the State’s DWI close. In sum, we teach ADA’s to argue that the defendant was on his way to kill somebody, even if there is no evidence to support that argument.
1. Blood on the Highway- The TDCAA manual tells prosecutors to “spend some time reminding them (the jurors) of the dangers of this offense. The case you are prosecuting may not have involved a crash but the thanks for that goes to the police officer who the skill and training to recognize the danger this defendants posed.”
Basically, the State wants jurors to find the defendant guilty out of fear. Even if a defendant posed a threat to no one, act like he killed somebody and thank the police for stopping him.
2. Blood on the Highway Part II- “The defense is very likely to make light of the fact that his client was arrested for stepping off a line a couple of times… Ask yourself what difference it would have made if he missed the brake by an inch.”
Even though field sobriety tests have never been tested to relate to driving impairment, argue it anyway. Again, another fear based argument. Ignore the facts, play to emotion.
3. Breath Test Refusal- “This defendant made a contract with the State of Texas. He promised that in exchange for the privilege of driving on our streets he would give a sample of his breath…. Now you know what his word is worth… that he is able to continue to put his pleasure above the safety and security of the rest of us.”
Implied consent is not a contract. Contracts require two parties bargaining fairly. Implied consent was created and enforced by fiat. Did you give up your 4th and 5th amendment rights to drive? Should you have to?
This is a plea to collectivism. The defendant is to be shown as selfish for not worshipping the idol of Public Safety. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of Public Safety?