A DWI Defense Attorney Explains Reduced Charges, Texas Plea Bargains
Texas has a reputation for harsh DWI penalties. So, it may be a little surprising to learn that it is among a minority of states where drunk driving suspects can plead down to lesser charges.
In most cases, your DWI defense attorney is going to work on getting your charges dropped or winning a favorable verdict. However, when circumstances make these outcomes unlikely, a plea deal may be an option worth considering.
Can Texas DWI charges be reduced?
The short answer here is, yes.
In general, county prosecutors are willing to reduce charges and make DWI plea deals because it saves their office and the court time and resources.
Still, it's not a good strategy to count on the prosecutor to come to you with an offer. In many cases, you need an advocate. An experienced DWI defense attorney is often necessary to investigate what happened, collect evidence, and negotiate for lesser charges.
Depending on the situation, a lawyer may be able to argue your DWI (driving while impaired also known as DUI) down to:
- Obstruction of a highway, passageway, or roadway
- Reckless driving
- Public intoxication
Reduced charges are not "get out of jail free" cards. They frequently carry their own significant penalties. These restrictions and punishments, however, are often preferable to DWI penalties.
DWI penalties in Texas are severe.
A first offense DWI conviction can be punished by up to 6 months imprisonment and thousands of dollars in fines. Texas will also suspend your license to drive.
DWIs usually cannot be expunged. This stain on your record can make your life more difficult. DWI convictions often make it harder to lease an apartment, get a loan, find work, or enter a trade or higher education program.
Meanwhile, obstruction of a highway, passageway, or roadway and reckless driving can both be punished by jail time and fines but can be expunged from your record. Public intoxication is punishable by a fine not to exceed $500.
Arguing for Reduced Charges
A prosecutor is unlikely to offer you a plea deal if they think they have a solid case against you. A knowledgeable DWI defense attorney knows how to tear down flimsy "evidence" like breathalyzer results and prove the weaknesses in a DA's case.
Your attorney may be able to get a plea deal for you if the prosecutor's case is lacking:
- BAC (blood alcohol content) test results from a blood, urine, or breath test
- Physical evidence of alcohol consumption
- Evidence that the alcohol you allegedly consumed significantly and negatively impacted your ability to drive
- Reliable testimony
Plea deals are also often considered if a suspect's rights were violated during the arrest, search and seizure, or other law enforcement activities related to the charge.
When Your Freedom Is at Stake, Experience Matters
If you are facing DWI charges in the Conroe area or anywhere in Montgomery County, contact Amanda Webb - DWI Lawyer right away.
Attorney Webb is a former Texas assistant district attorney with insider knowledge of the system and years of experience that gives her an edge when defending her clients.
We offer free case evaluations to people facing DWI charges in Montgomery County and the surrounding area. At no cost to you, a member of our team will listen to the details of your case and help you weigh your legal options.
Contact us today to schedule your free case evaluation.