The Leading San Antonio DWI Lawyer
In Texas, there are a number of intoxicated driving offenses.
- DWI 1st
- DWI 2nd
- DWI 3rd or more
- DWI with Child Passenger
- Intoxication Assault
- Intoxication Manslaughter
In each of these cases, it is important to have a DWI lawyer to defend you.
In Texas, a DWI First Offense is a misdemeanor charge unless there is a serious injury or the person was driving with a child under 15. Punishment can range from $2,000 to $4,000 and 180 days to a year in jail, depending upon the blood alcohol level.
A DWI Second Offense is more serious and has stiffer penalties, with a minimum jail sentence of 30 days and a fine and court costs of up to $4,500. These cases are very important to fight because if you get convicted and are ever accused again, they are felonies.
A DWI Third Offense is a felony level offense that can result in up to 10 years in prison. If you are charged with a DWI Third or more, you need to talk to a lawyer immediately.
What Is a DUI?
In Texas, a Driving under the Influence of drugs (DUI) arrest only applies to people under 21. With the help of a lawyer, you may be able to expunge a DUI from your record.
I Got Arrested – What Should I Do Now?
Contact a DWI lawyer! While I obviously want your business, many clients decide to talk to several law offices before making a decision. Just don’t wait too long or you risk losing your driver’s license. Also, preserve what you remember of the arrest by writing out what happened both before and during your interaction with the police. A trial could be several years away and those details could help with your defense.
DWI FOR DRUGS
In Texas, Driving While Intoxicated for Drugs is prosecuted under the same statute as Driving While Intoxicated, or DWI. There is not a different crime because the intoxicating substance was something other than alcohol, despite many people thinking it is a separate crime.
DWI Charges where somebody is seriously injured or killed are felonies. A DWI case if you have twice been convicted of DWI is also a felony offense. Otherwise, DWI for Drugs would be treated as a misdemeanor.
Sometimes a case of Driving While Intoxicated for Drugs also has an alcoholic component. Sometimes, it’s just about drugs. In either case it is important to hire someone who understands the science behind how a lab will look for intoxicants in your body.
BLOOD TESTING PROCESS
If the state took your blood as evidence for a Driving While Intoxicated for Drugs case, they will use a process called gas chromatography. Some people think that just because the state took your blood they will automatically look for any drugs in your system. This is not actually true.
The process of preparing a blood sample for analysis requires different chemicals be added depending on which substance they are testing for. The preparation for cocaine requires a different internal standard and a different column in the gas chromatograph. What does this mean for you? Well the more complicated the process, the more opportunities for the government to make a mistake.
Many complicated issues can arise when the government is trying to use your blood against you in a Driving While Intoxicated for Drugs case. Did the lab leave your blood out for too long with no refrigeration? Did they use expired chemicals? Did they calibrate the machine? When did they calibrate the machine? Did they prepare the sample the same way they are supposed to? Did they switch your vial with another person’s?
But, imagine if your lawyer doesn’t understand the process. How is he ever going to exploit those possible mistakes for you? If he or she doesn’t understand these processes, how will they convince a jury that you are not guilty and the lab made a mistake?
I AM A LAWYER-SCIENTIST
RC has attended several college-level courses specific to gas chromatography. If your case involves gas chromatography, or blood measurements of any kind, you should read about a Lawyer-Scientist.
RC is the only ACS-CHAL Lawyer scientist taking cases in San Antonio. That doesn’t mean that they can’t represent you, but if these issues are critical to your defense, shouldn’t you hire the lawyer who has studied them?
DRUG POSSESSION CHARGE
If you are charged with Driving While Intoxicated for Drugs, there can also be a separate charge for possession of drugs. For the vast majority of drugs this would be a felony level offense. The Law Office of RC Pate has had experience in handling these cases as well.
WHAT STEPS SHOULD I TAKE?
In the days immediately following a DWI Arrest you should do these things. It is important to get your car back, get some rest, then get a lawyer.
DRIVER’S LICENSE SUSPENSION
There could also be a Driver’s License Suspension if you are charged with Driving While Intoxicated for Drugs. This suspension can only be avoided if you request a hearing within 15 days from the day you were arrested. My advice to you is to hire a lawyer to handle requesting that hearing.