Texas law has harsh penalties for people driving while intoxicated. If you are a repeat DWI offender, then you should expect felony charges. A third or subsequent DWI is an incredibly serious charge which can result in prison time. A felony conviction can limit your personal and professional life.
Many felons have issues gaining employment, housing and federal loans. You may also be forced to relinquish your firearms in certain cases. Thankfully, there’s no reason to panic. You can choose to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to fight your DWI.
Any DWI conviction can result in severe penalties. However, if you’re charged with a third or subsequent DWI, the consequences could be life-changing. If you or someone you know has been charged with a third DWI, it’s imperative you contact an experienced attorney at Tyler Flood & Associates, Inc..
The attorneys at Tyler Flood & Associates, Inc. excel at DWI defense. Our managing attorney, Tyler Flood, was designed as an ACS-CHAL Lawyer-Scientist. This means he possesses an in-depth understanding of the science that goes into DWI. He can contest breathalyzer results, blood draws and improperly given field sobriety tests. Call now at (713) 224-5529 to schedule a case evaluation.
Tyler Flood & Associates, Inc. accepts clients throughout the greater Harris County area including Houston, Bellaire, Tomball and West University Place.
Overview of Third DWI in Texas
Texas has stringent law for people who drive while impaired. The Texas Penal Code states the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were:
Texas has no “look-back” period, meaning any prior DWI conviction can be used to enhance your charges. If you have a prior conviction for any of the following, then your penalties will be elevated.
Law enforcement measures impairment level by BAC or an assessment of your physical and mental faculties. BAC is determined through chemical tests such as breath analysis, blood analysis or urinalysis. Each of these tests measure the number of grams of alcohol per:
The legal limits in Texas include:
It’s important to understand chemical testing isn’t flawless. Chemical testing can be subject to human error which will skew your results. Lab personnel could accidentally contaminate your sample or use outdated equipment. In some cases, law enforcement will administer the test incorrectly leading to false results.
You can refuse chemical testing, but you’ll be in violation of implied consent laws. Implied consent laws state you’re implicitly agreeing to submitting to chemical testing if you drive on Texas public roads. Refusing testing will result in your license being suspended for up to 180 days. A second refusal could lead to a license suspension of up to two years.
A license suspension is a hassle, but it’s much easier to handle than a DW conviction. The majority of attorneys would recommend refusing chemical testing. There is a lot of room for error and your results could show up at or above .08. If you’ve been drinking, then it’s incredibly important you don’t submit to testing.
The prosecution for your case will not have any scientific concrete evidence of your intoxication if you refuse testing. This means they will have to rely on objective evidence to get a conviction. Refusing chemical testing will give you a much higher chance of reducing or dismissing your DWI.
Repeat DWI offenders tend to face harsh penalties. A third DWI conviction is a third-degree felony, which is punishable by:
If you’re convicted of a third DWI, then it’s highly likely you’ll be court-ordered to install an ignition interlock device (IID). AN IID is a breathalyzer that is connected to your motor vehicle’s engine. The device was designed to lessen repeat DWI offenders from drunk driving.
An IID requires you to submit a breath sample before starting the car. If you blow at or above .08 BAC, then the device will lock your engine. You won’t be able to access the car until a certain amount of time has passed. You also won’t be able “trick” the device by having another person blow into it for you. Ignition interlock devices perform “rolling re-tests” which are random re-tests while you are driving.
You’ll be required to pay the full cost of the installation for your ignition interlock device. The company you use must meet Texas law requirements and be approved by the court.
Texas DWI Laws – Visit the official website of Texas Legislation to read the Penal Code surrounding intoxication and alcohol beverage offenses. Access the statue to learn more about DWI, enhanced DWI and other alcohol-related offenses.
DWI Statistics in Texas – Visit the official website of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) to read their DWI-related statistics. Access the document to learn the difference of crashes in rural and urban areas, as well as the number of DWI fatalities in 2017.
If you or someone you know has been charged with a third DWI, then it’s crucial you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney. An attorney can assess your charges to develop a strong defense plan for you. Contact Tyler Flood & Associates, Inc. to speak to a skilled DWI attorney today.
The attorneys at Tyler Flood & Associates, Inc. are skilled in criminal defense. We have been practicing for years using efficient and effective defense tactics. Call today at (713) 224-5529 to schedule a case evaluation surrounding your charges. We accept clients throughout the Houston area and surrounding communities including River Oaks, Pasadena, Tomball, Bellaire and Uptown.
This article was last updated on March 7th, 2019.