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Can My DWI Be Charged as a Felony? 

 Posted on October 11,2023 in Uncategorized

Conroe Criminal LawyerIn Texas, a DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) offense can be charged as a felony. While a first-time DWI offense is typically a misdemeanor offense, subsequent offenses or specific aggravating factors can elevate the charge to a felony. If you have been charged with felony DWI, you need to seriously consider hiring a lawyer. Failing to hire a lawyer will almost certainly result in a negative case outcome.

Understanding When DWI is Considered a Felony 

Here are examples of when DWI can be charged as a felony, including:

  • Intoxication assault – A DWI can also be charged as a felony if it causes serious bodily injury to another person. This offense, referred to as intoxication assault, is considered a third-degree felony in Texas. If it can be proven that the driver was operating their vehicle while intoxicated and caused an accident resulting in serious bodily harm to another person, they could face felony charges. 

  • Intoxication manslaughter – If the DWI accidentally causes a death while influenced by an intoxicating substance, this may result in second-degree felony charges. A conviction on these grounds can bring a mandatory prison sentence of at least two years and up to 20 years. 

  • Child passenger – DWI while a child is in the car is also considered a felony. As a result, those convicted may face between two and ten years in prison. Endangering a child is frowned upon by the law and society, which is why it is charged as a felony offense.

  • Injuring a police officer – If someone causes bodily harm to an on-duty police officer or an officer acting in an official capacity while committing DWI, this is considered an especially heinous offense. Those convicted may face five to 99 years in jail, as it is a first-degree felony. 

  • Injuring a firefighter or EMT – If a firefighter or EMT is hurt by a driver committing DWI, the driver will likely be charged with a second-degree felony. 

It is also important to note that the penalties for felony DWI convictions in Texas vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case, prior convictions, and other factors. The court will consider factors such as the precise level of intoxication, the presence of aggravating factors, and the extent of harm caused to determine the appropriate punishment. 

Contact a Conroe, TX DWI Lawyer 

To fight these charges to try and avoid a devastating conviction, contact the experienced Montgomery County, TX DWI attorneys with Pullan & Young. Call 936-647-1540 for a free consultation. 

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