The state of Texas takes a tough stance against drunk drivers. In addition to the standard charges and penalties, there are more severe charges under certain conditions. An aggravated DWI is an enhanced charge reserved for those a court considers did something to make the initial offense even worse.
For example, if your BAC (blood alcohol content) is 0.15% or higher, you can be charged with aggravated DWI. Being charged with aggravated DWI due to your elevated BAC is considered a class A misdemeanor. This charge carries a fine of up to $4,000 plus up to one year in jail. You may also need to fit your car with an ignition interlock system, which requires you to start the vehicle by first breathing into the apparatus to ensure you have not been drinking.
Situations that lead to aggravated DWI charges
Some other situations which can lead to you being charged with aggravated DWI include:
- Driving with a minor child or children as a passenger(s) when intoxicated
- Being a repeat DWI offender
- Being charged with DWI when you are under the age of 21
- Refusing to take blood, urine or chemical tests when law enforcement requests them
- Speeding while intoxicated (usually 20 miles or more over the limit)
- Causing a serious accident or injury
An aggravated DWI will lead to increased fines and jail time compared to a simple DWI. You may also have your license suspended by the judge and could face manslaughter or murder charges if you caused a fatal accident. Should you find yourself facing these charges, you will need assistance to handle the fallout.