Tag: drug defense lawyer

What To Expect For First or Multiple DWI’s

A Guide to Texas DWI Laws and Penalties

Everything is bigger in Texas and in some ways, that includes the DWI laws and penalties.

Navigating the DWI laws in the state of Texas can be difficult. The laws are complex, and there are multiple categories of DWI offenses and penalties that you need to be aware of in 2017. This overview will help you sort through the complexities of the law, and understand them better.

Texas interprets the term “intoxicated” as not being in full control of your mental and physical functions as a result of your consumption of alcohol or drugs, and/or having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher (for adults who are not commercial drivers).

When a police officer believes that a driver may be intoxicated, they need to establish probable cause, and must give evidence that the driver is actually intoxicated. Probable cause includes observing the driver’s behavior, speech, and appearance.

Butler Law Firm | Texas DWI LawThe police officer may use a field sobriety test, which can include blood and breath tests, which the driver does have the right to refuse. However, it’s important to note that there are “implied consent” laws in Texas, which means that when you drive on Texas roads, you are automatically consenting to sobriety tests. So while you can refuse the tests, your license will be suspended immediately if you do.

One fact that drivers are often unaware of is that a driver who is arrested for DWI will usually have two cases filed against them: a criminal case and a civil case. The criminal case is the most severe, with escalating levels of possible punishment, along with stiff fines and possible jail time. The civil case will be filed by the Department of Safety and usually results in suspension of the driver’s license.

3 DWI Offense Categories

DWI First Offense:

If you’ve never been convicted in a DWI case before, this is the typical charge you will face. First-time DWI offenses are considered a Class B misdemeanor, with a possible penalty of 3 to 180 days in jail and a fine of up to $2,000. You’ll have your driver’s license suspended for a period of between 90 days to 1 year, depending on if you refused or failed the breath or blood test.

DWI Second Offense:

If this is your second DWI offense, your charge will automatically be elevated to a Class A misdemeanor, which carries fines of up to $4,000 plus a sentence of 30 days to 1 year of time in the county jail. License suspension will last from 180 days to 2 years. لعبه بوكر In some counties, a judge may require that your car be fitted with an ignition interlock device as a condition of your release pretrial or for probation. This device is like a breathalyzer attached to your car, which will prevent the car from being started until you breathe into the device and pass the test.

DWI Third Offense:

If you’re on your third DWI offense, the charge is instantly escalated to a third-degree felony, which carries a penalty of 2 to 10 years in the state prison, plus a $10,000 fine. Your license will be suspended for 180 days to 2 years. نادي بايرن ميونيخ For all third or multiple DWI offenses the judge by law must require that your vehicle be fitted with an ignition interlock as a condition of a possible pretrial release or for probation.

Although these 3 main DWI offense categories appear fairly simple, other specific factors can greatly complicate the severity of the consequences. Such instances include: an open container of alcohol in the vehicle, a minor being present in the vehicle, an extremely high BAC, or excessive speeding at the time you were pulled over. These factors can raise the offense to an “aggravated DWI” offense, and the fines you’ll be subject to can be much higher. The charge could even be escalated to a Class A misdemeanor or a felony.

Aggravated DWI Offense Charges

DWI With An Open Container:

If it’s your first offense when you’re found with an open alcohol container in the vehicle, you’ll be subject to the usual first-offense fine of $2,000, but your charge will be raised to a Class B misdemeanor.

DWI With A BAC Of .15 And Above:

If your blood or breathalyzer test results are .15 or higher, you could receive an elevated charge of a Class A misdemeanor. The fine would be $4,000 and you could face up to a 1 year sentence in the county jail. A driver convicted of this type of aggravated DWI offense could, by law, be required to have an ignition interlock device fitted to his or her vehicle.

DWI With A Passenger Under Age 15:

If you are pulled over with a minor passenger in your car, even if the child is yours, and are found to be intoxicated, then the charge will immediately be escalated to a felony even if it is your first DWI charge. This aggravated DWI offense carries a heavy fine of $10,000 and up to 180 to 2 years in the state prison.

Intoxication Assault:

If you are responsible for causing severe injuries to another person while you are intoxicated, you will be charged with a third-degree felony. The penalty could be anywhere from 2 to 10 years in the state prison, and you could be fined up to ,000. طاولة بوكر Most judges in Texas will mandate that an ignition interlock device be installed on your car for this aggravated offense.

Intoxicated Manslaughter:

If you take someone’s life while driving intoxicated the charge will be a second-degree felony, and face a penalty of 2 to 20 years in the state prison and/or a $10,000 fine. In Texas, most judges will also require that your vehicle have an ignition interlock device placed in it for this aggravated offense.

Even though these charge escalations may also appear fairly easy to understand, there is just no way to be sure how the district attorney will apply them to your case. The best strategy in your defense will need to be developed based on the unique circumstances of your particular case. The complexity of your case could be more involved depending on several factors, including the conduct of the officer or officers who made the arrest.

It’s important that your case be handled by a Houston Texas DWI lawyer who understands these complexities and has the experience to create a detailed strategy that will take advantage of all the factors of your case, and aggressively advocate on your behalf in order to get you the best possible outcome.

A Look At Houston’s New Marijuana Diversion Program

Harris County’s New Marijuana Diversion Program Sparks Debate

Citizens from all across the United States have led the charge for changing legislation governing the possession and use of marijuana. Today, several states have legalized marijuana for recreational use, and several others have passed medical marijuana laws, allowing the compassionate use of marijuana by people with specific medical needs. نتائج اليورو 2024 Many states, counties, and cities have revisited antiquated drug laws in light of the failed “war on drugs,” and have decriminalized marijuana.

When Harris County officials announced a new policy at the start of the month, decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of the drug, they initiated what many hope will eventually lead to total decriminalization of marijuana. Here’s the inside scoop on the county’s new Misdemeanor Marijuana Diversion Program:

Individuals will no longer be arrested and charged with a crime for possession of up to 4 ounces of marijuana, which means no court appearances or jail time.

Those facing misdemeanor possession charges will be placed in a decision-making class instead of facing jail time.

Those arrested for misdemeanor possession will have no criminal record upon the successful completion of the cognition decision-making course.

Harris County’s Misdemeanor Marijuana Diversion Program officially kicked off on March 1, 2017. The program has the support of county officials as well as many local residents, eager to see the departure from draconian drug laws that overburden our criminal justice system. This support comes from those in law enforcement, the courts, and those running our prison systems. This program has the potential to eliminate as many as 10% of the cases that are currently on court dockets, according to county officials.

Harris County is expected to save substantial government funds through the diversion of these non-violent, low-level offenders whose crime is to use a substance that is completely legal in several states, has been decriminalized in others, and is widely accepted and used by tens of millions of Americans.

Butler Law Firm | Marijuana Diversion Program in HoustonMarijuana cases account for over 10,000 misdemeanor cases that come before the courts every year, at a cost of million to prosecute. تحميل تطبيق الماتش An additional, $2 million is spent by county crime labs for testing evidence connected to marijuana cases, $13 million is spent annually by the County to house suspects, who average 6 days in jail. Law enforcement officers log nearly 4 hours from the initial stop to the booking of suspects, valuable time that would be better invested policing other crimes.

Antiquated drug crime laws fail to address the underlying issue, act as a drain on government budgets, and place innumerable people into the criminal justice system that are otherwise law-abiding folks. The rolling back of these laws has become a nationwide trend that is garnering increasing amounts of support. Unfortunately, lawmakers in the Texas House and Senate do not agree with the approach.

Members of the state Congress were quick to speak out following the announcement of Harris County’s new policy, most of whom condemned the move. لعبه القمار While the new policy is only concerned with the policing and prosecution of low-level offenses, Texas lawmakers have made the debate about more than only drug crime laws, they’ve also drawn into question whether local jurisdictions have any discretion when it comes to law enforcement. They believe that policy changes should only take place at the statewide level, which is unlikely to occur any time soon.

Other lawmakers, however, support that local officials have discretion in the crimes that they prosecute within their communities and jurisdiction. As they see it, local residents have supported the officials through their votes, so that they can have their voices heard on issues that are important to them. As Harris County has the belief that they’ll be able to protect public safety, end the overburdening of the criminal justice system, make more efficient use of public resources, and save significant amounts of money in the process, these legislators believe that Harris County’s policy shift is a reasonable one.

Although opinions do vary significantly, the fact is that the opinions about marijuana policy is shifting all across the nation, especially as the true cost of policing, prosecuting, and penalizing non-violent, low-level offenders is coming to light, as well as the impact that criminal records have on the lives of those convicted of the crimes. In Texas, Harris County is providing the leading edge of a new approach to drug crime enforcement.

While the new policy remains in effect, it’s important to keep in mind that it’s still possible to have legal problems for marijuana use and possession, particularly when higher quantities are involved, allegations of drug trafficking or sales is made, or when the arrest occurs in another jurisdiction. When you need a drug defense attorney Houston has the best. We can help you with any charges or criminal allegations that the government has levied against you.

Contact us or call now at 713-236-8744 for a free consultation to discuss the legal rights pertaining to your case.