Austin DWI Defense Attorney
DWI Defense Attorney Serving Clients Throughout Travis County
Today, most people are aware that driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is not only hazardous, but against the law as well. Nonetheless, drunk driving is still one of the leading causes of car accidents in Texas, often resulting in catastrophic injuries and fatalities. For this reason, DWI and DUI laws are strictly enforced throughout the state, and a conviction can have serious consequences including: Probation and/or jail time; Fines and court costs; and, Driver’s license suspensions along with DPS surcharges.
In addition to possible jail time and excessive fines, many negative consequences flow from a DWI conviction. A licensed professional may face revocation or denial of their license by the State Board governing their profession. Teachers, EMT’s and firefighters may face losing their certification. Pilots and commercial drivers face license suspensions.
I represent folks charged with DWI from all walks of life. My objective is to prevent a DWI conviction from causing you to lose your driver’s license, your livelihood, and most of all, your reputation.
Texas DWI Law
In Texas, a person commits an offense if he is intoxicated while operating a motor vehicle in a public place. The state may prove intoxication in two ways: 1) Not having the normal use of mental and physical faculties by reason of the introduction alcohol (or drug); and 2) Having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more. Therefore, in addition to alcohol related arrests, I am seeing an increasing number of DWI cases involving prescription medication—even when no alcohol is detected.
Important! You have 15 days to request a hearing to prevent your driver’s license from being suspended.
Following an arrest, the police will request a specimen of your breath or blood. If you refuse, the officer will likely obtain a warrant and take a sample of your blood. Thereafter your driver’s license will be taken from you and the officer will issue you a “temporary license.” You have only 15 days from the date notice is served (usually the date of arrest) to request a hearing contesting the suspension of your driver’s license. If you fail to request a hearing, your license will be automatically suspended on the 40th day following your arrest.
I consider the administrative license revocation (ALR) hearing an essential weapon in creating a successful defense to a DWI charge. When possible, I request a live in person hearing and compel the presence of the arresting officer. If the officer fails to appear at that hearing your driver’s license will be returned. If the officer appears, I will cross examine him at that hearing. This accomplishes two important things: 1) The officer’s sworn testimony is recorded and transcribed for use later at trial; and, 2) The ALR judge may find that the officer lacked reasonable suspicion or probable cause to arrest you and order the return of your driver’s license.
If you have been arrested for DWI, please call me 979.968.3783 as soon as possible to schedule an appointment for a case evaluation. It is important to retain an attorney and request an ALR hearing as soon as you can following your arrest.
Texas DWI Penalties
The penalties for DWI can be significant and are determined by a variety of factors including: your blood alcohol content (BAC); prior convictions; whether minors were present; and, whether there are injuries or deaths involved.
- First Offense – Class B Misdemeanor, punishable by up to 180 days in jail and a $2,000 fine.
- Second Offense – Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a $4,000 fine.
- Third Offense – Third degree felony, punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000.
- DWI Enhanced – If it is shown at your trial that your BAC was .15 or higher at the time of testing the charge will be elevated to a Class A misdemeanor even though it is your first offense.
In addition, a conviction for each offense can result in a license suspension for up to two years, and an annual surcharge for a three-year period in order to retain your license. In some cases, you must also install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle and participate in a DWI intervention or education course.
- DWI with child passenger: A person commits this offense he is intoxicated while operating a vehicle in a public place and the vehicle is occupied by a passenger who is younger than 15 years of age. This is a state jail felony, punishable by imprisonment of 180 days to 2 years and a fine up to $10,000.
- Flying while intoxicated: A person commits this offense if he is intoxicated while operating an aircraft. Unless enhanced, this offense is punishable by up to 6 months in jail and a $2,000 fine.
- Boating while intoxicated: A person commits this offense he is intoxicated while operating a watercraft. Unless enhanced, this offense is punishable by up to 6 months in jail and a $2,000 fine.
- Intoxication Assault: A person commits this offense he, by accident or mistake, causes serious bodily injury to another. This offense is punishable by up to ten years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
- Intoxication manslaughter: A person commits this offense he operates a motor vehicle in a public place and is intoxicated and by reason of that intoxication causes the death of another. This offense is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and $10,000 fine.
Texas DWI Defense Attorney
I will work diligently to win an acquittal or seek to have your charges reduced. I will develop a solid defense strategy by investing the facts of your case and researching the applicable law. My objective is to secure your freedom, maintain your driving privileges, and protect your good name. If you have been arrested for a DWI or for an alcohol related offense, please call me at 512.969.1200, 979.968.3783 or fill out a contact form to schedule a free case evaluation.