Earlier this month, an alleged drunken driver hit two off-duty deputy constables while they were working traffic control in a construction zone in Austin, Texas. At around 12:30 am, the deputies, while working on a lane closure, were allegedly hit by a Honda Civic when it tried to change lanes while going about 110 – 120 mph. The vehicle spun out of control, crushing one officer's foot and breaking the other's leg in three places. The arresting officers charged the driver with the intoxication assault of a peace officer, which is more severe than the average Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) charge. While a DWI charge is serious on its own, complicating factors can increase the stakes considerably. Having a great attorney on your side can ensure your rights upheld, your charges are not overblown, and your outcome is as favorable as possible.
Factors That Could Enhance a DWI Charge
Under Texas Penal Code § 49.09, a misdemeanor DWI can be charged as a felony if:
- The driver has prior DWI convictions,
- A crash results in serious injury,
- A crash leads to a death, or
- A first responder is killed or injured
Under Texas law, if convicted, the driver above faces two enhancements to what may have been a misdemeanor DWI charge. The injuries led to charges of Intoxication Assault, a third-degree felony, which could result in a sentence of 2 to 20 years in prison. As the injured parties were law enforcement officers, the charges could be bumped up to a second-degree felony.
In addition to felony DWI, the driver could be charged with reckless driving in a construction zone, compounding the possible fines and jail time.
How a DWI Expert Can Help
If you face a DWI charge, no matter how complicated, it's essential to have a DWI expert attorney by your side. It would be a shame to let a complicated case like this cause unnecessary hardship for you or your family. Your lawyer can analyze the state's evidence, argue for charges to be reduced or dismissed, and guide you through this challenging time.
Attorney Doug Murphy is extensive experience in DWI cases in Texas. He previously served as President of the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association and is one of only two attorneys in Texas who holds both DWI Board Certification and Criminal Law Certification. Additionally, he was named one of 2021 US News and World Report’s Best Lawyers in America. Doug will work tirelessly to defend your rights to the full extent of the law. Don't try to handle these charges alone. He can help. Call 713-229-8333 today to schedule a consultation.