If you are convicted of a DWI in Bellaire, TX, you could face serious, lifelong repercussions. If the police believe you were driving while intoxicated, you could go to jail, lose your license, and face fines.
In addition to the criminal penalties you face, your career, reputation, and family could also experience consequences. Do not waste time. As soon as possible after your arrest, call Blass Law for a confidential case evaluation. Our Bellaire DWI lawyer can help you fight the charges you face.
How an Attorney at Blass Law Can Help You Fight Bellaire DWI Charges
We can protect your rights while we build a strong case and defend you against the allegations made by the state. You can count on career criminal defense lawyer Jay Blass Cohen to represent you in your Administrative License Revocation (ALR) hearing and all criminal court appearances.
Finding the right lawyer can make all the difference in your case. We may be able to get the charges dismissed, work out a plea deal, win your case in front of a jury in a trial, or negotiate a probated sentence and community supervision on your behalf. Let us go to work on your case today.
Potential Approaches to Defending Your DWI Case
We can approach your DWI defense in several ways. Here are some of the tactics that our DWI lawyer in Bellaire, TX could use to build your case:
- Questioning the reasons for the arrest: To begin, an officer must have probable cause for pulling you over or making contact. Next, there must be specific articulable facts for the officer to escalate a traffic stop and proceed to conduct standardized field sobriety tests. If an officer did not have a valid reason or probable cause, we may be able to challenge the initial detention for your DWI charge.
- Breathalyzer issues: There are a variety of reasons why a breathalyzer test might give an inaccurate reading. The most obvious is that the breathalyzer is junk. The officer may have been working with defective equipment, or the test may have been subject to some other malfunction. Alternatively, some people have physiological or health issues that may cause an inaccurate reading.
- The test may have also been collected inappropriately: The Texas Breath Alcohol Testing Program Operator’s Manual gives specific guidelines for how these tests are to be conducted. If someone failed to follow those guidelines, your breathalyzer results could be inaccurate and inadmissible. We can investigate how your test was conducted and challenge your DWI on the grounds of improper testing.
We will work to collect accurate data and build your case.
For a legal consultation with a dwi lawyer serving Bellaire, call 713-225-1900
Get Started With a Bellaire DWI Lawyer On Your Case as Soon as Possible
There is no time to waste. There are many reasons why we need to get to work quickly on your DWI defense. Our DWI defense lawyer is ready to assist you through every stage of your case.
Bellaire DWI Attorney 713-225-1900
How Serious Is DWI?
Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a serious problem, and this is not just regarding the potential legal fallout. It can also lead to severe accidents, resulting in significant property damage and injury.
When vehicles collide in a DWI collision, those involved can suffer head, neck, and spinal cord injuries. These victims and their families then must cope with physical and emotional pain and suffering.
As noted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), DWI is even more common in Texas when compared to the national average. Because it is such a problem, you can be sure law enforcement will take DWI incidents very seriously. This makes it even more important to consult an attorney and gather evidence for your case as soon as possible.
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How Does Law Enforcement Determine DWI?
Even if you haven’t been drinking, law enforcement could pull you over if they believe you have violated the law. How you were driving can suggest you were operating the vehicle while under the influence. For example, if they notice you swerving into other lanes or not stopping at the appropriate times, they might suspect you are intoxicated.
Officers might also suspect you are intoxicated if they notice certain behaviors such as:
- Red, bloodshot, glassy eyes
- Slurred speech
- Imbalances or limited coordination (These are what many field sobriety tests are checking).
Officers might use a few different methods to see if you are displaying signs of intoxication. For example, they may ask you to complete the standardized field sobriety tests; note that these tests are voluntary. Examples of standardized field sobriety tests are:
- In the horizontal gaze nystagmus test, officers will ask you to follow a moving object that is close to your face, such as the officer’s finger or a pen
- The walk and turn, where officers will ask you to walk for nine steps in a straight line, turning around, and having you walk the same straight line back to the starting place
- In the one-leg stand, officers will ask you to stand on one leg for thirty seconds or more
A more official method is a breathalyzer test measuring the alcohol content in your blood. Any reading above 0.08 indicates that you are above the legal limit and can be charged with DWI. However, sometimes these tests are inaccurate. It might not be in your best interests to agree to take a breath test. If you refuse, though, the officer will likely get a search warrant and force a blood draw.
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You Do Not Have to Fail a Breath Test to Get a DWI in Texas
At Blass Law, we can help you fight Bellaire DWI charges, no matter the circumstances that led to your arrest. In general, you may face an arrest and DWI charges if a law enforcement officer pulled you over and:
- Your breath or blood tested at .08 or above.
- They believed you lost the normal use of your mental or physical faculties.
There are also several related crimes they could charge you with in relation to a drunk driving stop. For example, if you are under the legal drinking age and have any detectable alcohol in your system, you could face a driving under the influence (DUI) charge.
Open container charges are also common. If you fight officers when they have a search warrant for blood, they can charge you with interfering with the duties of a public servant.
A Texas DWI Conviction Comes With Serious Consequences
Before you go to court for a DWI, you will face the administrative license revocation process, where the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) attempts to strip you of your driving privileges. The police officer who arrests you will take your license and issue you a temporary permit. The ALR is automatic and separate from your criminal case.
What Are the Penalties When a Person Gets Their First DWI?
If you get convicted of a DWI, the loss of your license because of the ALR will likely take a backseat to other, more serious consequences. As a first-time offender, penalties may include:
- A $2,000 maximum fine
- Three days to six months in jail
- An additional license suspension, up to one year
In some cases, you may be able to get probation—called community supervision—instead of these penalties. This could require you to commit to a certain number of hours of community service, attend alcohol education classes, report regularly to a probation officer, and more. It could keep you out of jail and allow you to continue working or going to school.
Additional Charges May Call for Extra Penalties
You may be facing additional charges, depending on the circumstances surrounding your DWI. These can include the following:
- If you have a previous DWI conviction, you could face more serious consequences. This could include 30 days to one year in jail and up to $4,000 in fines for a second offense. A third offense is a felony charge, punishable by two to 10 years in prison and fines up to $10,000.
- Getting a DWI with a child in the car is also a felony offense. Your sentence, if convicted, could include six months to two years in state jail and a fine of up to $10,000, according to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT).
- You will likely also face additional penalties when sentenced if you had an open container in your vehicle or if you tested at .15 BAC or higher.
- If you caused an accident that resulted in injury or death, you can face intoxication assault or intoxication manslaughter charges.
- Intoxication assault penalties are two to 10 years in prison, up to $10,000 in fines, and a potential two-year license suspension.
- Penalties for intoxication manslaughter are between two and 20 years in prison, up to $10,000 in fines, and a potential two-year license suspension.
Other Consequences of a DWI
Jay Cohen and his team at Blass Law provide every client with strategic, aggressive representation. We understand that your livelihood, reputation, relationship with your family, and future opportunities are on the line, and we believe they are worth defending.
We will get to work to defend you in the face of these consequences following a DWI charge. Our team can answer any questions you have and help you understand the defenses that may be available to you. Then, your Bellaire DWI attorney can choose a strategy that gives you the best possible chance to clear your name. Other consequences you could be facing once you have a criminal conviction on your record includes:
- Loss of employment: Some employers may terminate your employment immediately if they find out you have been convicted of a DWI. You could also lose your employment if your job requires you to drive and your license is suspended. A suspended license can make it difficult to find transportation to get to work. If you must miss work because of required jail time, your employer could fire you for missing work.
- Difficulty finding employment: Many employers conduct background checks when hiring potential job candidates. If they see a criminal conviction on your record, they may deny your application and hire someone with a clean record.
- Failed background checks: If you are applying for housing with an apartment complex, you could be denied if you failed a background check. You could also be impacted by a failed background check if you are applying to college or applying for a loan.
- Auto insurance premium increase: Auto insurance companies can increase your premium after a DWI conviction because you would be considered a high-risk driver. The auto insurance company could also drop your policy. It can be difficult to find a new policy after having a DWI on your record.
- Civil lawsuits: If you were in an accident when you obtained the DWI charge and someone was injured, you could be facing a civil lawsuit. The injured person or their family could file a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit against you. You could be subject to paying a large amount of compensation to the injured person.
- Professional licenses: If you hold any professional licenses, they could be revoked after a DWI conviction. This could make it harder to maintain your employment or find employment in the future.
Our attorney is going to work hard to get you the best possible outcome in your case. We can do what it takes to try to protect you from having a criminal conviction on your record.
Why Work With a Bellaire DWI Lawyer From Blass Law?
Criminal defense attorney Jay Cohen has never worked for the prosecutor’s office and never fought against those who face DWIs and related charges. He has always been on the side of people just like you. He and his team can go to work today to protect your rights and build a strong defense on your behalf.
Other reasons to consider our team include:
- Jay Cohen is a Certified Practitioner and Instructor in Standardized Field Sobriety Testing. We have the background necessary to investigate your field sobriety results.
- Jay Cohen is a lawyer scientist accredited by the American Chemical Society. We have knowledge of the scientific techniques to find real problems.
- Our past results for clients speak for themselves. We have gotten DWI charges dismissed or reduced for many previous clients, even for those with multiple prior offenses and felony charges.
- We keep our clients well informed of their options and provide the best defense. Our legal team will work hard to protect your right to freedom by avoiding jail time, large fines, and help you preserve your driver’s license.
We will work to get you the best possible outcome for your case. We understand what laws apply to your case and how to gather accurate data.
Our Initial Case Evaluations Are Always Confidential
You may be feeling scared after getting charged with a DWI and not know who to turn to. Our team is available 24/7 for a confidential consultation. During the consultation, we will discuss the details of what happened and inform you on how we can help.
After the consultation, you will know your legal options and have your questions answered. Connecting with our attorney soon after you have been charged can be helpful to your case. This will give us more time to evaluate the circumstances of your case and come up with a solid defense strategy.
We can begin working on your case immediately after you choose to start working with our team.
Reach Out to Our Attorney About Your Bellaire DWI Today
Blass Law is here to help if law enforcement officers in Bellaire, TX arrested you on accusations of drunk driving or a related charge. Our team has helped many past clients get their DWI charges dropped or reduced, helping them avoid having a criminal conviction on their record.
Contact us for a confidential case review with a member of our team. We are ready to answer your questions and work with you toward the most favorable outcome for your Harris County case.