Waco DWI Attorney
Aggressive Defense Against DWI Charges in Texas
DWI is a common charge prosecuted in Texas courts. Texans of all ages, backgrounds, and socioeconomic levels can find themselves facing drunk driving arrests in Waco or the surrounding areas. You may have just been to a social event and suddenly find yourself taken to jail after being arrested by law enforcement on your way home. It can be a distinctly jarring, humiliating, and frightening experience and one you believe you can never overcome. However, that is far from the truth. Law enforcement can make various mistakes in DWI arrests involving their procedure, their equipment, their testing, and more, all of which can negate the charges they allege.
DWI charges are complex matters that involve Texas law, science, and technology. For an aggressive defense of these charges, you will need an attorney who understands how these areas intersect to make up what is behind any DWI arrest. Your lawyer will need to know DWI law, as laid out in Texas Penal Code Section 49 and other laws as well as the procedures for testing, the testing equipment used, and how testing results can be skewed by everything from improper equipment calibration to the medical conditions of the driver being tested. Thus, DWI cases can be investigated and attacked from various angles if your lawyer knows what to look for.
Texas DWI Laws
In Texas, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher or while under the influence of drugs. Law enforcement officers are authorized to stop and detain individuals suspected of driving while intoxicated (DWI). If an officer has probable cause to believe you are DWI, they may request that you submit a chemical test to determine your BAC. This can be done through a breathalyzer test or by analyzing a blood sample. Refusal to submit to a chemical test can result in an automatic suspension of your driver's license. If you are arrested for DWI in Texas, it is important to retain the services of a qualified defense attorney as soon as possible. Our Waco DWI lawyer can help you navigate the legal process and fight for a favorable outcome in your case. Don't hesitate to contact the Law Office of Kyle C. King for assistance!
Are you facing a DWI charge in Texas? Call the Law Office of Kyle C. King today at (254) 332-1414 or contact us online to schedule a meeting with our Waco DWI Lawyer! Hablamos español.
In Texas, the consequences of a DWI conviction can be severe, with a range of penalties that can significantly impact your life. Understanding what you may face is essential in making informed decisions when dealing with DWI charges. This section provides an overview of the potential penalties for DWIs in Texas, shedding light on the legal ramifications you could encounter.
If you are charged with a first-time DWI (driving while intoxicated) offense in Texas, you could face the following penalties:
- Fines of up to $2,000
- Up to 180 days in jail
- Suspension of your driver's license for up to one year
- Required attendance at education or treatment programs
- Required installation of an ignition interlock device on your vehicle
The punishments for a second or third DWI in Texas, as articulated in Texas Penal Code Section 49.09, are far-reaching.
For a second DWI, the penalties include the following:
- Fines of up to $4,000
- Minimum 30 days of confinement, maximum of 1 year
- Driver’s license suspension for up to 2 years
A third DWI offense is treated even more seriously under Texas law, escalating to a third-degree felony.
Below are the potential punishments for a third DWI:
- Fines of up to $10,000
- Imprisonment for 2 to 10 years
- Driver’s license suspension for up to 2 years
The consequences can extend beyond the legal and financial. They can also impact your reputation, relationships, and future opportunities. Such profound implications reinforce the value of having experienced and skilled legal representation when facing these charges.
It is important to note that Texas has an "implied consent" law, meaning that if you are arrested for DWI, you must submit to a chemical test to determine your blood alcohol concentration (BAC). If you refuse to take the test, you can face additional penalties, including the automatic suspension of your driver's license.
Our Waco DWI lawyer can work to minimize the potential consequences of a DWI charge and negotiate with prosecutors to reduce the charges against you or secure a plea deal that results in less severe penalties.
When Is DWI a Felony in Texas?
In Texas, driving while intoxicated (DWI) is generally charged as a misdemeanor offense. However, there are certain circumstances where a DWI can be charged as a felony.
Here are some situations in which a DWI in Texas may be charged as a felony:
- If you have been previously convicted of DWI three or more times, a subsequent DWI offense can be charged as a third-degree felony.
- If you caused an accident while driving intoxicated, someone was seriously injured or killed. As a result, you could be charged with intoxication, assault, or manslaughter, both of which are felonies.
- If you were driving while intoxicated with a child passenger in the vehicle, you might be charged with a felony offense known as child endangerment.
It is important to note that these are just a few examples of circumstances in which a DWI in Texas may be charged as a felony. The specific charges and penalties you may face will depend on the specifics of your case and your criminal history. If you have been charged with a DWI and are facing the possibility of a felony conviction, you must speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
When facing DWI charges, get skilled legal help from an attorney who cares about your future. A DWI conviction will give you the barrier of a permanent criminal record that can jeopardize your job, any future employment, and many other life opportunities. The time to fight a conviction is now – start with a case analysis by our Waco DWI attorney. Learn more about your case, how the law impacts it, and how we can help in a free consultation.
Navigating the complexities of DWI cases in Waco, Texas, can be daunting, and it's only natural to have questions and concerns. To assist you in gaining a better understanding of the process and the legal implications, we've compiled a list of frequently asked questions. We aim to provide clear, straightforward answers to these common queries, empowering you with the knowledge you need to make informed decisions during this challenging time.
Do You Need a Lawyer for a DWI Case?
DWI laws in Texas are complex, and the consequences for a conviction are severe. A knowledgeable DWI defense attorney can scrutinize the nuances of your case, challenge the prosecution's evidence, and help protect your rights.
Having an experienced DWI lawyer by your side can significantly affect the outcome of your case. They can evaluate the procedures followed during your arrest, the breath or blood test accuracy, and identify any potential defenses. Furthermore, depending on the circumstances, they can negotiate for lesser charges or even attempt to get the case dismissed.
What Are Potential Defenses Against DWI Charges?
A lawyer can explore several potential defenses against DWI charges. Some of these strategies include the following:
- Questioning the legality of the traffic stop: Law enforcement must have a valid reason to stop you. If it can be shown that the officer lacked reasonable suspicion to pull you over, the evidence collected may be inadmissible in court.
- Validity of field sobriety tests: FSTs are not always reliable indicators of impairment. Factors such as physical health conditions, nervousness, or even weather conditions can affect the results. If it can be demonstrated that these tests were improperly conducted or their results misinterpreted, they may not hold up in court.
- Breath or blood test accuracy: Breath and blood tests must be conducted using correctly calibrated equipment by trained personnel. Moreover, the tests must follow certain protocols. If any of these procedures were not followed to the letter, the results may be disputed.
- Rights during the arrest process: If your rights were violated during your arrest, such as not being read your Miranda rights, any evidence obtained could be thrown out.
Can You Refuse a Breath or Blood Test After a DWI?
You technically have the right to refuse a breath or blood test after a DWI arrest, but it's important to understand the potential consequences. Texas has an "implied consent" law, which essentially means that if you’re arrested on suspicion of DWI, you automatically agree to chemical tests of your breath, blood, or urine.
However, if you refuse the test, it can result in an automatic license suspension. Refusal to take the test does not guarantee an acquittal. The prosecution can still use other evidence against you.
How Does a Prior DWI Conviction Affect the Penalties for a Subsequent DWI?
A prior DWI conviction in Texas can significantly impact the severity of the penalties for a subsequent DWI. Texas law takes repeat offenses very seriously, and the punishments become more severe with each subsequent conviction.