By Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal
Probably, it depends on where the arrest took place.
DWI Arrests in Richardson, Plano, Frisco, Allen and McKinney are virtually all video-taped. Texas law formerly required only larger cities and municipalities to have cameras on squad cars. The law has since been amended so that all police cars have video cameras. Some agencies that were not previously required to have cameras may take a bit of time to come into compliance for logistical and/or budgetary reasons.
You should always assume that you are being video and/or audio taped with talking with police. The tape protects you just as it does the police. Police reports frequently only highlight the facts which support the officer’s conclusion — that the driver is intoxicated. The video, though, shows the entirety of the situation. It exposes when police try to exaggerate their claims on any given case.
Each county has different policies for releasing the video tapes to defense attorneys. Collin, Dallas, Denton and Tarrant Counties are all fairly easy to work with in attaining videos, however, they are frequently not available to the defense for a month or more after the arrest because the video must go from the agency to the District Attorney’s office — and then a copy must be made for the defense.
*Jeremy Rosenthal is Board Certified in Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and licensed by the Supreme Court of Texas. Nothing in this article is intended to be legal advice. For legal advice about any situation you should contact an attorney directly. Contacting the attorney through this forum does not create an attorney client relationship and communications sent through this forum are not privileged nor confidential.