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Is Driving While High Considered DWI in Texas?

Texas DWI attorneyAccording to High Times, being convicted for driving under the influence of marijuana is the same as being found guilty of drunken driving. That’s because cannabis, like alcohol, can impair driver reaction time, perception and spatial awareness. As a result, high drivers pose a danger to themselves and others on the road.

If you are stopped for suspicion of driving under the influence in Texas:

  • You are subject to testing.
  • Refusing to provide consent for blood specimens can be used as evidence against you.
  • You do not have the right to consult an attorney about whether to submit to the test.
  • Based on the test results, it’s up to a prosecutor to decide whether you will be charged.
  • In other words, you’re facing an uphill legal battle from the very moment you are stopped by police.

Penalties: Your Future Could Go Up in Smoke

In Texas, according to Leafly, the world’s largest cannabis-focused website, the penalties for driving while high include:

  • First offense (Class B misdemeanor): From 72 hours to 180 days in jail, $2,000 - $4,000 fine, or both; license revocation of up to one year; surcharge of $1,000 to $2,000 per year for three years.
  • Second offense (Class A misdemeanor): From 30 days to one year in jail, $4,000 fine, or both; license revocation for 180 days up to two years; surcharge of $1,500 to $2,000 per year for three years.
  • Third offense (third-degree felony): From two years to 10 years in prison, up to a $10,000 fine; community service for 160 to 600 hours; license suspension for 180 days to one year, surcharge of $1,000 to $2,000 per year for three years.

In addition, you may face substantially higher insurance rates, lose the ability to rent a car, and could lose your job (particularly if it requires driving).

Protect Your Rights

Just like someone who is accused of drunken driving, if you’ve been arrested for driving under the influence of marijuana, you face an uncertain future. Texas is known for its tough stance against motorists who drive under the influence. Please note that proving that a driver was high at the time of being pulled over may be difficult, as specimens of cannabis can remain in a person’s system for weeks after use.

That’s why, in the Houston area, your first call after being arrested should be Texas DWI lawyer Amanda Webb. The Webb Firm, P.C. serves the Houston and The Woodlands areas, Conroe, and Montgomery and Waller Counties. In practice since 1990, her extensive experience gives her insights into the common mistakes made by police, how the local courts work, how to investigate the particulars of your case and how to aggressively present the best defense to protect your rights and your future.

At the same time, you will be treated with respect and compassion. Contact us today for a free case consultation.