What Elements Must Be Proven for a DWI Conviction?
Most non-lawyers have a general knowledge of what a particular criminal violation might be. However, they generally don’t know what exactly the state must move in order to convict a client of a crime. These required proofs are broken down into discrete sections, each of which must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt for a criminal conviction to stand. The elements that a Fort Worth DUI lawyer will defend you against are set out below.
Texas Law - DWI
Offenses involving intoxication and alcoholic beverages are governed under the Texas Penal Code. Under the Code, an individual drinking and driving may be committing the offense of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). The elements that the state must prove to convict that driver of a DWI are:
- That the driver was intoxicated or had alcohol in an open container – To be found to be intoxicated, an individual must
- Have a Blood Alcohol Concentration of 0.08 or more or
- Not have had the normal use of mental or physical faculties because of the use of alcohol, a controlled substance, a drug, a dangerous drug, and a combination of any of the two of them, or any other substance, into the body.
- While operating a motor vehicle – the DWI statute does not define this term; elsewhere, it means driving a vehicle or being in actual physical control of it.
- In a public place – generally, the public highways, which includes the entire width of the road available for the use of motor vehicles.
Texas Law – DWI with a Child Passenger
If the state proves that you were doing all of the above and had a passenger in the car under the age of while you were doing so, you will be charged with Driving While Intoxicated with a Child Passenger, which is a state jail felony. You will also likely be given a separate charge of child endangerment. Under those circumstances, you will want to contact a Fort Worth DWI lawyer as soon as you can
Texas DWIs Can Have Serious Consequences
Any offense in Texas involving driving and alcohol can leave you with severe penalties, not to mention a long-term impact on your car insurance availability and cost.
Charge DWI 1st Offense
- Fine up to $2,000
- Jail sentence up to 180 days with a 3-day mandatory minimum
- Loss of license for up to one year
- Fine of up to $4,000
- Jail sentence from one month to one year
- Loss of license for up to two years
- Fine of $10,000
- Prison sentence of two to ten years
- Loss of license up to two years
DWI Open Alcohol
- Fine up to $500 per open container
DWI Child Passenger
- Fined up to $10,000’
- Jail time of up to two years
- Lose license for an additional 180 days
Contact a Fort Worth DWI Lawyer Today
If you or someone you love has been recently charged with an alcohol-related driving offense, contact us today. We can help you to avoid the more onerous consequences of your potential conviction.