DWI First Offense
In the State of Texas, if its your first time being arrested for driving while intoxicated in Houston then it will amount to a misdemeanor criminal offense. In fact, first time DWIs are classified as Class B Misdemeanors in the State of Texas and carries a possible criminal penalty of anywhere from 3 days in jail on up to a full 6 months country jail.
The criminal offense of driving while intoxicated may also carry a monetary fine of up to two thousand dollars. In short, if you are arrested for the first time for a DWI offense, the maximum punishment is six months county jail with a 2,000.00 fine.
Probation for DWI
In some cases, if you’re working with one of the better attorneys, you may be able to avoid a fine, and the possibility of serving jail time if the Houston DWI lawyer can get the court to give you probation.
If probation is granted for a DWI conviction you will be required to perform community service hours up to a possible 200 hours. Further, you will be required to attend a DWI education class, a Victim Impact Panel, monthly random urine analysis among other possible conditions and possibly be required to maintain an ignition interlock on the car you drive.
If you don’t have a good criminal defense attorney for DWIs on your side, and you wind up convicted in the court of law for a first time DWI offense, you will waste a lot of time and treasure. If you are punished to the fullest extent of the law in Texas, spending 6 months in jails wastes a lot of time right along with giving the State of Texas 2,000.00 in fines.
If you can afford the luxury of hiring a top Houston DWI lawyer to assist you with your defense, then you will have a expert at your side ready and willing to attack the State’s case against point by point. In fact, you may not have been legally arrested. Alcohol in its purest form has no smell. If the Houston Police Department arrested you on the basis of some faulty field sobriety testing, of a “smell of breathe” assumption, a good lawyer will be able to beat the charge. In any case, having a criminal defense lawyer on your side will ensure that your Constitutional Rights are defended vigorously.
The Potential For Texas Driver License Suspension
There’s also the strong possibility of you losing your right to legally operate a motor vehicle in the State of Texas if you are arrested for driving while intoxicated by law enforcement on public roadways. During the process of being arrested for a DWI, the police may request that you cooperate in a breath test using a breathalyzer type device. Alleged offenders who decline to take part in the breath alcohol analysis testing will have their drivers license suspended for 6 months.
Six months of no driving is an eternity in Houston, TX.
A person who makes the decision to take the breath alcohol test, and fails, will have to deal with their drivers license being automatically suspended for a period of 90 days.
Either you or your defense attorney can challenge the suspension of your Texas Driver License in the court of law within 15 days of your arrest for DWI. The procedure is called an Administrative License Revocation Hearing.
The Administrative License Revocation (ALR) Program is a civil administrative process unrelated to criminal court proceedings. The ALR Program applies to individuals arrested for Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) or Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) and refuse to take or fail a blood or breath test.
A Houston criminal defense attorney, with experience working with the criminal justice system in Harris County, TX, should be able to stop the suspension of your Texas Drivers License.