Am I going to jail? This is the first question many of our DWI clients ask. The answer can be complex. Texas DWI law places strict consequences on DWI convictions. These penalties can include incarceration in jail or prison, but having an attorney who is truly willing to advocate for you may help you avoid jail time.
The penalties of a Texas DWI conviction can vary according to the circumstances of the offense. A first or second DWI is usually considered a misdemeanor. A third offense is a felony. Penalties can be higher when there is an open container, a child in the car or an accident related to alleged drinking:
- A first offense, considered a class B misdemeanor, can carry 72 hours to six months of jail time.
- A second offense is considered a class A misdemeanor can carry 30 days to a year of jail time.
- A third offense is considered a felony in Texas and can result in two to 10 years of prison time.
One of the consequences of a DWI conviction can be required use of an ignition interlock/guardian interlock device, a monitoring device that prevents people from operating their vehicles if they have been drinking. These can be required as a condition of bond (awaiting trial), or as a condition of probation, depending on the circumstances of the case.
A Prosecutor’s Mindset — A Defense Attorney’s Tenacity
While there is no way to predict exactly what the results of your case will be, we can help determine the probable outcome. Our founding attorney, Ned Barnett, began his career as a state prosecutor in the Galveston County Criminal District Attorney’s Office and then served as a federal prosecutor for the Department of Justice with the U.S. Attorney’s Office. This experience gives him an inside perspective on how prosecutors think. He uses this perspective as a defense attorney to help our law firm achieve the best possible results for clients.
How do we get the best possible results? We don’t give up. At the Law Offices of Ned Barnett, we don’t negotiate with prosecutors. By knowing the law on DWI and knowing when the police made mistakes, we know when prosecutors can’t prove their case. So, we take DWI cases to trial to help our clients avoid prison or jail time.