The crime of driving while intoxicated has a wide-ranging demographic. Seemingly, anyone out for a night out with friends can find themselves pulled over by a police officer suspecting drunk driving.
Like many other states, legal intoxication in Texas is .08. Commercial drivers have a much higher standard at 0.04 percent blood alcohol content.
Throughout Texas, law enforcement officers are patrolling the roads, oftentimes coming across a driver that seems to be under the influence of alcohol. Twenty percent of all drivers are caught. Of those, one in ten have previously been jailed for DWI.
The consequences of DWIs in Texas
A first offense carries significant consequences. Anywhere from a three to 180 jail stint is possible. Fines can add up to $2,000 with a Class B misdemeanor attached to a driver’s record. Automatic license suspension will last 90 days to a year.
Non-criminal penalties will likely include car insurance premiums going up more than $500. Add to that court costs and attorney fees, the total bill for a first DWI can be as high as $5,000.
Those finding themselves charged a second time for DWI could result in another 30 days in jail and a Class A Misdemeanor. Fines can more than double from a first offense, and license suspension could last up to two years.
Three times is definitely not the charm when it comes to drunk driving. A third-degree felony is added to a criminal record with fines in the five figures ($10,000). Jail time is up to 10 years. Suspension of licenses can last two years.
Significant criminal consequences require skilled legal representation from an attorney who can navigate through the complexities of a drunk driving charge.