What happens when you get a DWI in Texas ? – Drinking and driving can easily lead to extremely dire consequences—driving while intoxicated is regularly a deadly choice. The least of the consequences is an arrest, which is still a serious, life-altering event. Being arrested for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated leads to a charge known as a DWI, which is a criminal offense.
Anyone who is arrested and charged with a DWI is transported to the police department and booked ahead of an arraignment. The arraignment is held in court, where the person charged pleads guilty, not guilty. Those who plead guilty are sentenced for the crime, while those who plead not guilty retain an attorney and prepare for a trial. (Note: Some people might plead no contest, which means they neither admit to nor deny having committed a crime. This and the other options will be explained to the accused before entering any plea option in court.)
Penalties for a DWI conviction in Texas have gotten more stringent over the years. These penalties might include a fine, jail time, and license suspension, or any combination of those things. They are dependent on a number of different factors, including the number of arrests for previous offenses of a similar nature and the blood alcohol content, or BAC, of the driver at the time of his or her arrest. Fines vary but can be up to $2,000 for a first offense; that amount often increases with more than one arrest and can reach as much as $10,000. As for jail time, that can range from a few days to a year in jail, or up to 10 years in prison for three or more offenses. And license suspension can last up to two years. Further, after two DWI arrests and convictions within a five-year period, drivers are required to have specialized ignition switches, called ignition interlock devices, installed in their vehicles by someone approved to do this task; these switches prevent operation of vehicles by the owner if he or she makes an attempt to drive after drinking. Additional court orders might include an alcohol ankle monitor, a requirement to attend an alcohol rehabilitation program, participating in community service, and others.
It is especially important to have an experienced criminal defense attorney to represent any driver charged with a DWI. The best attorney will be able to help from start to finish of the case, explaining the details so that informed choices and decisions can be made as to how to proceed. He knows the process and procedures to secure the most positive results and will provide guidance and advice in defense of the accused with an eye towards a quick resolution of the case with the best possible outcome.
Collin Evans is a top Houston DWI attorney, with years of experience and success in court. Contact the Law Office of Collin Evans online or by phone at 713-225-0650 for more information on how to handle your DWI case and to schedule a free consultation.