Being accused of driving while intoxicated could have serious implications on your professional and personal life. While this offense is common, a conviction can have consequences that can last a lifetime.
If you have been charged with intoxicated driving, it’s important to speak to an experienced defense attorney as soon as possible. Our Grapevine DWI lawyers have helped hundreds of people in similar circumstances. We will thoroughly evaluate your case and develop a solid defense strategy in an effort to protect your license, your livelihood, and your liberty.
Under Penal Code Section 49.04, Texas defines driving while intoxicated as operating a motor vehicle in a public place while intoxicated. Intoxicated means either a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 (or 0.04 for commercial drivers.) Intoxicated also means not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties due to the consumption of drugs or alcohol or any other substance. Common ways police test for intoxication is by administering a field sobriety test or using a breathalyzer.
A DWI is a Class B misdemeanor, with consequences that vary depending on the number of prior offenses.
Many factors can increase the penalties associated the charge against you. If you refuse to submit to take a sobriety test, your license will be automatically suspended for at least 180 days. Having a child in the car automatically escalates the crime to a state jail felony. Additionally, having a BAC of 0.15 or more increases the crime to a Class A misdemeanor.
In most cases, the prosecutor will make a plea offer. The work of a defense attorney is two-fold in the plea negotiations phase. First, to identify any weaknesses in the case to leverage a better outcome, and second to prepare a mitigation packet that can be used regardless of the merits of the case.
In other cases, it will make sense to go to trial where many attacks on the evidence can be raised. You may have a defense to the DWI, which you could present at trial. This includes necessity (driving to avoid worse harm to yourself or someone else), duress (being forced to drive), or involuntary intoxication (being drugged).
Whether you should take the plea deal or fight the DWI charge is a matter you should discuss with a Grapevine attorney who has thoroughly reviewed the facts of your case.
A skilled defense attorney could also challenge the legality of the traffic stop, whether the sobriety test was accurately performed, or improper police conduct. The defenses and strategies depend on the facts of your case, but a well-practiced attorney will know what arguments you have at your disposal.
Getting convicted of driving while intoxicated can severely impact your life. A conviction could affect your ability to drive, result in jail time and expensive fines. Increase your chances of a favorable outcome, by speaking with a Grapevine DWI lawyer today. Call us at (817) 203-2220 or reach out online for a free consultation.