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About DWI Charges in Conroe

Effective Defense throughout Montgomery County

Facing DWI charges in the Conroe area? When you have accurate information on a subject, you will be able to make better decisions. As an experienced Conroe DWI lawyer, Doug Atkinson can offer helpful guidance during a confidential consultation. Give yourself the best chance at a favorable outcome by calling now to schedule a free consultation about your case.

Call (936) 681-0031 now or contact Douglas W. Atkinson, Attorney at Law online to get started.

Driving While Intoxicated

According to Texas Law, a person commits DWI if he or she is intoxicated while operating a motor vehicle in a public place.

"Intoxicated" means either:

  • Not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties by reason of the introduction of alcohol, a controlled substance, a drug, a dangerous drug, a combination of two or more of those substances, or any other substance into the body; or
  • Having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or more

What Are the Different Types & Different Penalties for DWI?

A first offense of Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a Class B Misdemeanor, with penalties including:

  • Minimum term of confinement of 72 hours in jail
  • Up to a maximum term of confinement of 180 days in jail
  • Fines of up to $2,000
  • License suspension for up to one year

DWI First Offense with Open Container

"Open container" means a bottle, can, or other receptacle that contains any amount of alcoholic beverage and that is open, that has been opened, that has a broken seal, or the contents of which are partially removed.

If a person is charged with a first-time DWI offense with an open container of alcohol in the vehicle, consequences can include:

  • Minimum of 6 days in jail
  • Up to 180 days in jail
  • Fines of up to $2,000
  • License suspension for up to one year

It is a class C misdemeanor to knowingly possess an open container in a passenger area of a motor vehicle that is located on a public highway, whether or not the vehicle is stopped or parked.

It is not a violation to have an open container in a locked glove compartment or similar storage area, the trunk, or the area behind the last upright seat of the vehicle (if the vehicle does not have a trunk).

It is also not a violation to have an open container if you are a paying passenger in a bus, taxicab, or limousine. Nor is it a violation to have an open container in the living quarters in a motorized house coach or trailer. The penalties include a fine not to exceed $500.

DWI Second Offense

A subsequent DWI is a Class A misdemeanor.

Penalties include:

  • 30 days-1 year in jail
  • Fines of up to $4,000.
  • License suspension for up to 2 years

DWI Third or Subsequent Offense

A third DWI or greater is Third Degree felony

Penalties include:

  • 2-10 years in prison
  • Fines of up to $10,000
  • License suspension for up to 2 years

DWI with Child

A person commits an offense if they operate a motor vehicle in a public place and the vehicle is occupied by a passenger who is younger than 15 years of age. DWI with Child is a state jail felony.

The penalties include:

  • 180 days-2 years in jail
  • Fines of up to $10,000
  • License suspension for up to 2 years

Intoxication Assault

A person commits an offense if their intoxicated driving causes serious bodily injury to someone else. This can even include assembling a mobile amusement ride while intoxicated.

"Serious bodily injury" means injury that creates a substantial risk of death, or that causes serious permanent disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.

Intoxication Assault is a third degree felony, and penalties include:

  • 2-10 years in prison
  • Fines of up to $10,000
  • License suspension for up to 2 years

Intoxication Manslaughter

When a person operates a motor vehicle in a public place, operates an aircraft, a watercraft, or an amusement ride, or assembles a mobile amusement ride; and by reason of that intoxication causes the death of another by accident or mistake, they face charges for Intoxication Manslaughter.

This crime is a second degree felony with penalties that include:

  • 2-20 years in prison
  • Fines of up to $10,000
  • License suspension of up to 2 years

Boating While Intoxicated

A person commits DWI if he or she is intoxicated while operating a watercraft. Boating While Intoxicated, first offense, is a Class B misdemeanor.

The penalties include:

  • Minimum of 72 hours in jail
  • Up to 180 days in jail
  • Fines of up to $2,000
  • License suspension of up to a year

Boating While Intoxicated Second Offense

Boating While Intoxicated, second offense, is a Class A misdemeanor.

The penalties include:

  • 30 days to 1 year in jail
  • Fines of up to $4,000
  • License suspension of up to 2 years

Boating While Intoxicated Third Offense

A third BWI or greater is Third Degree felony.

Penalties include:

  • 2-10 years in prison
  • Fines of up to $10,000
  • License suspension for up to 2 years

Can I Get Probation?

If convicted for an intoxicated related offense, you may be eligible for probation. However, there is no guarantee you will receive probation.

Depending on the type of intoxication crime, you could be placed on probation for up to 10 years. The probation requirements will vary from county to county and will also depend on the length of your probation.

The terms of the probation will be specific to you, however, common requirements include:

  • Report monthly to your probation officer
  • Pay monthly probation fees (usually $60 per month)
  • Perform monthly community service hours (24 hours minimum up to 100 hours)
  • Pay court costs and fines
  • Pay any court ordered restitution
  • Attend a DWI awareness class
  • Attend a victim impact panel
  • Install an interlock device on any vehicles you own
  • Not use any alcohol or illegal drugs
  • Submit to random alcohol and drug testing
  • Not commit any crimes
  • Alcohol and/or drug rehabilitation
  • Limitations on leaving the County or State of conviction
  • Loss of the right to go into any establishment that serves alcohol or where the primary business is the service of alcohol
  • Risk of confinement in the county Jail if you violate any of the probation conditions. The confinement risk is up to 180 days on a first DWI and up to 1 year on a second DWI offense.
  • Risk of confinement in prison if you violate felony probation conditions.

What Is an Interlock Device?

An interlock device is a machine that uses a breath analysis mechanism to make the car inoperable if alcohol is detected in the breath of the driver. If a person has been convicted of a second or subsequent DWI offense within 5 years of the most recent conviction, the court must order the defendant to have an interlock device installed on each motor vehicle owned or operated by the defendant.

Are There Fees Associated with a DWI Conviction?

The Texas Department of Public Safety assesses fees, called surcharges, for you to keep your driver’s license after a DWI conviction. You will have to pay these surcharges for 3 years if convicted of DWI.

Fee scheduling is as follows:

  • First DWI: $1,000 a year for 3 years ($3,000)
  • Subsequent DWI: $1,500 a year for 3 years ($4,500)
  • Breath test result of .16 percent or higher: $2,000 a year for 3 years ($6,000)

Will a DWI Arrest Show on My Record?

If you are arrested for DWI, that arrest will show up on your criminal record. If you are convicted for DWI, the conviction and preceding arrest will be on your record for the rest of your life. However, if you are not convicted for the DWI, the arrest can be expunged from your record if certain requirements are met.

If you have been charged with DWI or an intoxication offense in Conroe, you should involve an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Doug Atkinson is an aggressive DWI defense attorney who is committed to fighting his clients’ charges and protecting their best interests.

Call (936) 681-0031 now to get started on your case.

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Quality You Can Count On
  • Over 21 Years of Experience
  • We Only Practice Criminal Defense
  • Approximately 10,000 Cases Handled
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