Are you facing charges for your first driving while intoxicated (DWI) offense? If so, you’ll be curious to know what you’re up against exactly and what a DWI conviction could mean to your future. A first DWI in Texas is a Class B misdemeanorunder Section 49.04 of the Texas Penal Code. Under Sec. 49.04 it states, “A person commits an offense if the person is intoxicated while operating a motor vehicle in a public place.”
Under Texas law, there are two ways someone can be guilty of DWI whether the defendant does or does not submit to a chemical test: 1) drivers who do not have the normal use of their physical or mental faculties due to the introduction of alcohol or drugs, or a combination of alcohol and drugs, or 2) drivers who have a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or above.
Penalties for a first-time DWI offense in Texas:
- A maximum fine not to exceed $2,000.
- Up to 180 days in jail.
- Up to a one-year driver license suspension.
- An annual fee up to $2,000 for three years to keep one’s driver license.
While a first DWI offense is typically a misdemeanor, with the presence of “aggravated circumstances,” it can be prosecuted as a felony. For example, if the impaired driver causes serious bodily injury or death as a direct result of impaired driving, he or she can be charged with intoxication assault under Sec. 49.07, or intoxication manslaughter under Sec. 49.08 of the Penal Code.
Related: ALR Process for DWI
A first DWI can be charged as a state jail felony under Sec. 49.045 of the Texas Penal Code if the someone drives under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or a combination of alcohol and drugs while having a child passenger under the age of 15 in their vehicle.
Are you facing DWI charges in Plano, Dallas or Fort Worth? If so, contact The Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC for a hard-hitting defense.