Driving While Intoxicated

  • Posted on: 26 November 2014
  • By: brent

One of the most damaging criminal charges in the State of Texas is Driving While Intoxicated (DWI), which may be charged for having a blood alcohol content (BAC) level over .08 or some combination of drugs and alcohol that lead law enforcement to believe you're a danger to yourself or others while driving or attempting to drive a vehicle.

The penalties for a DWI conviction are extreme, and can include probation that requires classes, community service, and specific instructions to not drink during your probation. If you are arrested with a BAC over .15, you are statutorily required to have a breathalyzer device attached to your car's ignition... and if you don't own a car, the judge may even order you to buy a car and equip it with a breathalyzer in order to fulfill the statute's requirements. Once convicted, you will be required to pay yearly fines to the state that increase based on the number of DWI convictions you've suffered, and these convictions toll for a decade after conviction. Note that most district attorneys will *never* offer a deferred adjudication on a DWI, so every plea (even probation) is a conviction. In some jurisdictions and with some defendants, a negotiated jail sentence may be preferable to a long probation.

Some jurisdictions may offer an "Obstructing the Highway" lesser offense when a defendant is charged with DWI, however, this is largely limited to those cases that would be extremely difficult to prove at trial. Many defendants find themselves going all the way to trial on a DWI charge - be prepared to either plea (and accept a conviction) or face a trial (with the results based on your facts). Some evidence may be suppressed by way of a hearing where the arresting officer has to replay the events of the arrest - but this process is overseen by a judge who may not have the defendant's best interest in mind.

If you have been arrested of a DWI, immediately hire an attorney. You may avoid a suspension of your license (through an ALR hearing) or a breathalyzer device attachment to your vehicle, and the quicker you negotiate a plea, the quicker you're off of probation and putting this experience behind you.

In most counties you are required to appear at all your court settings prior to accepting a plea agreement; however, in Dallas County hiring an attorney will allow that attorney to appear for you on misdemeanor cases. So once you've been arrested and bonded out, give me a call at (214) 870-9876 or email me at brent@burpeelaw.com and I'll file a Notice of Appearance in your case as quickly as possible. Don't waste your time going to the court house when you can hire me to do it for you! If you accept a plea agreement, my rates are inexpensive and I accept a flat fee with payment plans, if needed.