Drunk Driving

What’s the Penalty for a Texas DWI Conviction?

DWI Lawyers in Houston are often asked this question by their clients and potential clients. We always explain that the punishment depends on;

  • the situation that created the arrest,
  • the specific DWI offense,
  • and any prior criminal history of the accused with a special focus on prior Driving While Intoxicated offenses and convictions

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The High Cost of Being Convicted of DWI

The penalty for Driving While Intoxicated, in most cases, is quite severe. Where you have been arrested for DWI and are adamant to fight the charge one ought to understand the defenses available to them. With a proper defense one might just evade conviction, suspension of a license, and ultimately get acquitted. In a DWI case, the prosecution has to prove two things.

The Prosecution Must Prove Guilt

First that the defendant was the person driving the vehicle in question, and secondly, that the defendant was under the influence of a drug, for example, alcohol, another intoxicating drug,, or a combination of drugs. And to prove this, in cases where the defendant has been accused of a serious offense, a blood test may be necessary to prove that the defendant was indeed intoxicated.

One defense a defendant may have is that the officer involved in the case did not actually pull them over while were driving the vehicle, which is the reality in most DWI cases. For example, where an officer did not in person observe you driving the vehicle or where the officer found you behind the steering wheel of your car in its stationery state, the issue of DWI will become debatable.

Drunk Driving Defenses

Another strong defense a defendant may have in a DWI case is that there was no probable cause to stop the defendant in his vehicle and subsequently arrest him/her for DWI. Any evidence a defendant may present on the process of arrest will be considered in the court process. For example, where one is of the conviction that they were arrested as a result of their race or ethnicity, and not for reasons of erratic driving or apparent intoxication.

Intoxication Manslaughter: A Serious Felony

However, in instances where one has been charged with Intoxication Manslaughter, defense becomes infinitely harder. The consequences for this type of offense are severe for all parties involved; the injured party as well as the accused. Intoxication Manslaughter is considered a felony crime in most jurisdictions and generally carries a sentence of between two to twenty years imprisonment and possible fines that could be as much as $10,000.

Intoxication Manslaughter differs from manslaughter and vehicular manslaughter on the premise that these two demand some proof of recklessness. However, for Intoxication Manslaughter, once it has been proven that you were indeed intoxicated while driving the vehicle in question, the law will automatically make the presumption of the act being reckless on its own. Therefore, no further proof is required to show reckless driving and a conviction and/or fine is eminent.

Nearly Killed Texas DWI Victim Speaks Out in Arlington

In a drunk driving accident that sparked headlines all over Dallas on the basis of a video capturing a drunk driver blowing a red light and plowing into a vehicle, the Dallas Morning News reports the victim who lived spoke as a part of an initiative focused on drunk driving and public awareness during the holiday season.

Grande Prairie Police Chief Steve Dye stated, in no certain terms, that reporting and preventing DWI is a societal responsibility that we all need to get involved with.

Even affected drunk drivers know the statistics of how many people down the road as a result of drinking and driving no differences in behavior are evident. This is led the police force asked the public to get involved in reporting suspected drunk drivers throughout Dallas County and elsewhere in Texas.

The Holiday Season and DWI

During this holiday season Dallas, San Antonio, and Houston area DWI tasks forces and police will hope to crack down on the dangers posed on our society by drunk drivers and are asking the public for help in capturing these people. Snitch-lines may be different depending on the jurisdiction in which you live, but believe they’ll be answered.