DWI Attorney in Houston TX
It can be devastating to be charged with a DUI or DWI. It can feel as though all the things you have spent your life working towards are in jeopardy. You may feel alone, unsure of where to turn. We understand how you feel, and we may be able to help.
Attorney Joe Cannon understands how serious the consequences of a DWI conviction can be, and we know that you understand the gravity of the charges. We are not here to scare you. We are here to fight to defend your rights and help you overcome the case against you. To discuss the circumstances of your case in more detail with one of our experienced, tenacious Houston DWI defense attorneys, please contact us today by calling 713-347-9179.
If you or a loved one has been charged with driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you may be unfamiliar with the legal process and what steps to take to defend yourself against the charges. A DWI conviction can have a serious effect on your livelihood and may include incarceration, fines, and loss of driving privileges.
What are the DWI penalties?
The penalties for DWI intensify depending on the number of prior DWI convictions.
- For your first DWI offense, which is a Class B Misdemeanor, you may receive a fine of up to $2000 and/or jail time for 3 to 180 days, and a driver’s license suspension for 90 to 365 days.
- For a second offense, which is a Class A Misdemeanor, you may receive a fine of up to $4000 and/or jail time for 30 days to one year, and a driver’s license suspension for 180 days to two years.
- For a third offense, which is a 3rd Degree Felony, you may receive a fine of up to $10,000 and/or jail time for two to ten years, and a driver’s license suspension for 180 days to two years.
What do BAC and 0.08 mean?
BAC stands for Blood Alcohol Concentration, and it is the percentage of alcohol present in 100 milligrams of blood, 210 liters of breath, or 67 milliliters of urine. You are considered legally intoxicated if your alcohol concentration equals 0.08 or more.
Can I refuse a field sobriety test? If so, should I?
Yes, you can and should always refuse to take a field sobriety test. Field sobriety tests are proven inaccurate at determining if alcohol concentration exceeds 0.08, even under ideal laboratory conditions. There are no penalties for declining these tests, but the officer may still arrest for DWI if he believes he has probable cause. Moreover, the police officer may consider your refusal as an admission of guilt.
Can a police officer force me to take a breathalyzer, urine test, or blood test?
A police officer can only force you to take a breathalyzer, urine test, or blood test if the four following requirements are met:
- there is a DWI arrest and an accident;
- the officer has a reasonable belief that any individual has died or will die as a result of the accident;
- an individual, other than the person arrested, has suffered serious bodily injury; and
- the individual arrested for DWI refused to give a specimen voluntarily
What constitutes intoxication?
The Texas Legislature defines intoxication in two ways:
- not having the normal use of your mental or physical faculties by reason of the introduction of alcohol or drugs (legal or illegal) into your body; or
- having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more.
The prosecutor must prove only one of these definitions to obtain a guilty ruling in a DWI trial.
What is DWI?
Driving while Intoxicated (DWI), as defined by the Texas Legislature, is the criminal offense of driving a motor vehicle in a public place while intoxicated.
Driving Under the Influence (Houston DUI) in Texas
DUI and DWI, Two Different Charges
Often when someone is charged with Driving While Intoxicated (DWI), he or she thinks the charge is Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in Texas. In many states, DUI and DWI are the same, but in Texas, DUI and DWI, are two different charges.
The differences between DUI and DWI greatly outnumber the similarities.
- DUI pertains solely to minors, individuals under the age of 21
- Alcohol must only be detected in your system — BAC is of no consequence
- Arrest for DUI is at the officer’s discretion
- DUI charges can coincide with DWI charges — if over the age of 17
Will I have to go to jail?
If this is your first DWI charge or was able to convince the State to dismiss your case or get a not guilty judgment after a trial by judge or jury, you will not go to jail. Even if you are convicted, you can usually get probation, unless you choose to serve jail time instead of attempting to comply with the terms of a lengthy DWI probation. But your chances of jail time increase, if you have prior DWI convictions.
How We Can Help
Our experienced Houston DWI lawyers have dedicated their careers to helping people who have been charged with DUI or DWI. With decades of combined professional experience to put at your disposal, we may be able to help you if your case involves:
- Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)
- Driving Under the Influence (DUI)
- Drunk Driving
- Boating While Intoxicated (BWI)
- Intoxication Assault
- Intoxication Manslaughter
- Driving While Intoxicated by Drugs (DWID)
- License Revocation
- Public Intoxication (PI)
If you or someone you love has been charged with these or other alcohol-related crimes, we may be able to help. The legal system of the United States recognizes that people are innocent until proven guilty. Let us help you defend your rights.
The consequences of a DUI or DWI conviction can be serious, and your best chance at overcoming the charges against you or securing a lesser punishment could be engaging the services of an experienced, compassionate Houston DWI attorney. To learn more about what we may be able to do for you, please contact Attorney Joe Cannon today by calling 713-347-9179.