Texas

Things to Know About DWI Felony Cases in Texas

Before you pick up your next drink at your neighborhood bar, there are some things that you need to be aware of, especially if you are living in Houston Texas. Even though driving under the influence isn’t considered ti be a small violation in any state, Texas is especially strict on those who decide to drink and drive. In fact, getting under the wheel while under the influence of any substance that affects the physical and mental capabilities of a driver isn’t tolerated under the law in places all over the globe. According to the laws of Texas, however, you will find that there are specific requirements that the officers are sworn to adhere to if the driver takes a breathalyzer test and fails due to the concentration (i.e. 08 or higher – alcohol test). Or, the driver decides to refuse a breathalyzer and takes his or her chances in court. Either way, you should be aware of what the consequences will be if you want to stay out of jail.

It is also important to note that these laws cover felony DWI charges and how they relate to each violation that an individual is subject to. Here are 4 felonies that can get you quite a bit of time behind bars.

Intoxication Assault and Felony Houston DWI Charges

An intoxication charge that leads to a conviction of a second degree or a third-degree felony is called an intoxication assault. With this type of felony charge, you can expect the person to have caused a serious injury to another individual. In certain cases, you can expect this person to have a problem that can be deemed as a person who has a habitual DWI problem.

Manslaughter and Felony Houston DWI Charges

When a person gets a lifetime sentences for driving under the influence, you may find that the reason for such a long life sentence is due to a case that involves manslaughter. For instance, if the person was driving with a passenger in the car and the individual was killed during the accident, the law usually entails charging this kind of DWI with a manslaughter felony charge. In this cases, people need a very good Texas defense attorney that can defend them to see if they can avoid a life sentence in jail.

DWI and Child Passenger – Felony Charges

Getting behind the wheel with a child in the car after drinking a glass or two of alcohol is not a good idea at all. Aside from putting any passenger in harm’s way, this type of action will quickly lead to a felony charge. Therefore, for anyone who does not want to spend time behind bars after coming from a local liquor store, it is extremely important to remember that no child under the age of 16 be near the vehicle when a police officer pulls a car over.

Though there are many different ways to punish a driver for driving under the influence, some punishments are deemed as much more severe than others. Specifically, when the driver has a child passenger in the vehicle, someone is killed or severely injured by these actions.

Texas Adult Drivers Education: Drinking & Driving in Texas

The Texas Adult Drivers Education program has created a wonderful video that’s intended to drive home the message of the dangers of drunk driving. Drug use and alcohol use can result in drunk or impaired driving which can result in serious criminal charges for individuals arrested by Texas law enforcement officers for DWI.

DWI & BAC Measurements

Drinking and driving is the number one killer in Texas! We lose about 1,000 people a year when someone makes a selfish decision to get in the car and put themselves and others lives in danger!

Driving While Intoxicated in Texas

Notable Facts from the Video

  • Driving While Intoxicated is the 2nd most serious offense you can commit while driving a vehicle.
  • The most serious offense is killing someone as a result of a car accident derived from driving while impaired.
  • Roughly 1,000 people are killed every year in Texas, due to drunk driving.
  • DWI-accidents are the #1 cause of traffic fatalities involving people under the age of 29.

Fighting Open Container Cases in Texas Courts

Open Container Violation

According to experienced DWI lawyers, open container violations will result in small to moderate fines. However, there are times in which it may lead to much steeper consequences. So it’s important that you know how to avoid this offense. Here are a few things that can make you vulnerable to an open container violation.

Drinking Alcohol in Public Places

You’re very likely to receive an open container violation if you fail to keep your bottles and cans sealed. This is an easy mistake to make if you’re taking the bottle from a friend’s home after a social gathering. Bottles that are not sealed or in a bag may be viewed negatively by the police.

Related: 15 Unusual Facts About Texas Alcohol Laws

Ignoring Established Boundaries

If you fail to pay attention to established boundaries, then you may receive a violation. In certain instances, there are specific areas in which people are permitted to drink. In fact, there are often signs posted that specify where you’re allowed to carry open containers of alcohol in public places. For example, while you may not be allowed to drink on public sidewalks, you may be permitted to drink on a specific area of the sidewalk if you’re a patron of a bar or sidewalk café.

Drinking and Driving

It’s important to keep in mind that drinking and driving makes you more vulnerable to receiving an open container violation in Harris County. This is because your container will be open while you drive. Even if the passenger has a bottle of beer, if it’s in a place where you could easily reach it, you could be charged.

Storing Empty Cans or Bottles

There are a lot of drivers who are in the habit of not regularly cleaning or organizing their vehicle. Unfortunately, this can make a huge impact on your life if you are ever pulled over. You can possibly be cited for all of your empty cans and bottles. Even if the alcohol was consumed by someone else, a very long time ago you may still be held responsible for it. In fact, even if the container has only a small amount of alcohol, it will be viewed as an open container. This is why it’s often recommended that drivers rinse out their empty bottles and cans if they are carrying them in their vehicles.

Engaging in Disruptive or Dangerous or Behavior

Another way in which you may make yourself vulnerable to an open container violation is by acting disorderly. This can draw attention to your open container. This is especially the case if you are in an area that has laws against public consumption. The officers’ main concern is to ensure the safety of the public.

Conclusion

Whether you’re intoxicated or not, drinking alcohol while driving is extremely dangerous. And this is why Texas takes its laws on DWI so seriously. An open container violation can sometimes lead to serious consequences. As you can see, there are various ways in which you can make yourself vulnerable to an open container violation. This is why it’s very important to pay attention to the local laws.

A DWI after One Time of Drunk Driving

A Man with Goals

Bob was responsible with a bright future. Not only was he a top rate academic with dreams of teaching after law school, he was also well liked by his professors.

His ability to connect with them made them very willing to accept him as a regular face at the university. When it came to academic parties, one of his well connected TA’s wanted to help usher him into the circle. The staff saw him as someone who would eventually teach at the university with his natural gift for language.

Bob loved the big city, big dreams environment of Houston, Texas. He loved being known for being an aspiring up and comer as well.

Altruism

He didn’t necessarily come from the best background, but he even saw that as something he could transcend. His parents were upper middle class but he had felt very emotionally neglected when he was young. The rocky turmoil between his parents always seemed to take center stage to his needs.

Because of this, Bob was very active in his local church. He wanted to help teenagers who potentially felt the same way. That’s why he volunteered to help with some their activities on a regular basis. The fact that it looked good on his resume didn’t hurt either. The University of Houston was always looking at these kind of social gestures.

Popularity & Social Drinking

Bob had a diverse group of friends. Some of his friends had gravitated towards his charismatic personality. He was a likable guy who didn’t say no to a good time. That extended to his partying as well. When Bob was drunk, he felt at one with the crowd. He loved to be right there in the mix.

Since Bob was well off, he always had the means to get home properly. He was the type of guy that didn’t mind calling cabs, tipping well, and just lying in his bed in bliss. Some people from his church knew he had a drinking problem, but he made huge efforts to quit cold turkey. But because all his other friends wanted to have their friend back, Bob got easily pulled into situations involving copious amounts of alcohol still on occasion.

One Bad Decision Leads to a DWI Case

One particular night, he ended up at a small pub with a friend. He mainly wanted to eat pizza but it became a drinking and talking about problems time instead. He’d been on a diet as well as under tee total restrictions, so he just relished the opportunity to let loose.

He was still drunk and realized it was closing time. The pub was in the middle of no where, so there was no where to go but home. Thankfully, the pub was a couple blocks from his home. At the outside of the pub, his friend got into a brawl with the locals. Bob felt very uncomfortable at that point.

Bob’s friend convinced Bob in his drunken state that it was no big deal to drive the car home. Bob was so shaken that he gave into temptation the first time in his life. Unfortunately, one of the local patron’s friends had called the cops.

As Bob was pulling away, the police pulled up and stopped him. He was charged with intoxication assault and given a DWI. This was the first time Bob had ever been driving drunk, and now he had two charges on his record.