DWI – Second & Third Offense
DWI Defense Attorney in Houston: Brazoria, Ft. Bend, Galveston, Harris & Montgomery Counties
When someone is facing a second or third conviction for driving while intoxicated (DWI), selecting an effective Houston-area DWI lawyer can be the difference between spending time in jail and getting on with life. The possibility of a second or third DWI conviction is cause for concern. The charge is serious, and the penalties are real.
DWI Second and Third Offenses
Conviction on a second DWI offense is a Class A misdemeanor. A second offense can result in a jail sentence of at least 30 days and up to one year. The offender can also receive a fine of up to $4,000. Conviction on a third DWI offense is a third-degree felony. An offender can be sent to prison for as much as 10 years and be fined up to $10,000. Even a sentence of probation requires a minimum jail sentence of five days for a second offense and 10 days for a third offense.
A second or third DWI offense within 10 years of an initial DWI conviction can also result in serious civil penalties, including revocation of driving privileges for up to two years. Even after the revocation of driving privileges has expired, offenders must pay a reinstatement fee, surcharges and fines in order to obtain a valid driver’s license. Drug and alcohol treatment evaluation, rehabilitation classes or the installation of an ignition interlock device may also be imposed.
After proving the existence of a previous DWI, the district attorney must also show that there was probable cause for the traffic stop that resulted in a DWI charge. If a police officer stops someone for an unusual pattern of driving, it must be proved that the erratic driving was due to a blood alcohol level higher than 0.08 percent or the influence of drugs. An experienced DWI attorney may be able to demonstrate that the erratic driving was due to some other cause such as tiredness or physical illness. The lawyer will ensure that a suspect’s constitutional rights have not been violated.
Typical signs of impaired or drunk driving that are routinely detected by police officers include the following:
- Speeding or driving slowly
- Weaving or driving at uneven speeds
- Running a red light or stopping at a green light
Successfully defending a person who has been accused of a DWI requires an experienced lawyer who thoroughly understands the laws and prosecution strategies that will be employed to obtain a conviction. Greg Tsioros is a highly regarded Houston-area criminal defense attorney. As a former Harris County assistant district attorney, Mr. Tsioros is qualified to defend the rights of those who have been charged with a second or third DWI.
Call (832) 752-5972 to schedule a free consultation.
**Recent Updates to Texas DWI Law**
New circumstances in which officers can forcibly take blood WITHOUT A WARRANT:
- accident with mere bodily injury or other person transported to hospital
- arrest for DWI with child passenger
- if officer has reliable information the offense can be prosecuted as a felony
Take the first step to putting your legal matters behind you.