How to Win the Defense of a DWI Charge

Forming a winning DWI defense involves both great legal representation doing the right things and a great DWI defendant also doing the right things. Having a spectacular lawyer on your side, 2021 Houston DWI Lawyer of the Year Doug Murphy, can do wonders. Attorney Murphy can help you beat your Texas DWI charge. But the DWI defendant also plays a critical role. No, you don't have to be, indeed should not be, your own lawyer. You don't need legal knowledge or advocacy skills to beat your DWI charge. But you do have important things to do. The best way to beat a Texas DWI charge is not only to have the best available DWI defense lawyer but also to be that lawyer's best client. The following steps show how beating a Texas DWI charge takes a team and how you're a critical part of that team.

First, Know What's at Stake

To beat a Texas DWI charge, you must first respect what is at stake. If you don't understand and appreciate all that you have at stake with a DWI charge, then you won't devote the time, attention, and resources necessary to your successful defense. If one thing defines a winner, that thing is to know the value of winning. Winners know what's at stake. And because they know what's at stake, they are willing to marshall the resources necessary to win. Count the true, total potential costs of a DWI conviction. Count them honestly, fully, frankly, and (if you don't mind the pun) soberly. Know what's at stake.

A DWI charge doesn't simply risk a hefty fine and some jail time. Those criminal sanctions, the penalties of a DWI conviction, can be the least of worries a DWI defendant faces. Unexpected collateral consequences, surprising other ways that a DWI conviction can impact your life, can be far more serious than the DWI penalties. Collateral consequences can include:

  • loss of your driver's license;
  • loss of a commercial driver's license;
  • loss of a job, business, or career;
  • loss of professional licenses or certifications;
  • loss of security clearance;
  • loss of the right to carry and possess firearms;
  • loss of lawful residency status;
  • loss of pensions and other benefits;
  • challenges renting an apartment;
  • difficulty qualifying for student aid;
  • loss of honors and awards;
  • loss of networks, mentors, and friends; and
  • loss of child custody.

These potential impacts of a DWI conviction are serious. These impacts warrant beating the DWI charge. These impacts warrant taking the time, giving the serious attention, and devoting the substantial resources to forming a winning DWI defense. Don't make the mistake of underestimating the negative impacts, even lifelong impacts, of a DWI conviction. Treat your DWI charge with the seriousness it deserves. Weigh what's at stake in the balance, and do what's necessary to win, to beat your DWI charge. Be a winner, not a loser. Losers don't see what's coming. Winners see what's coming, and they act swiftly, surely, and decisively to win.

Second, Get the Best Available DWI Defense Representation

Once you count the true costs of a Texas DWI conviction, then you'll appreciate that you need the best available DWI defense representation to beat a DWI charge. The high cost of suffering a DWI conviction warrants retaining the best available attorney to beat the DWI charge. You wouldn't entrust anything of great value to you, like your physical health, the physical and mental health of your spouse, your children's education, or your financial future, to an inexperienced, poorly qualified, inexpert professional. You know the value of those things, and so you'd entrust them only to the highest-qualified professional. When facing a DWI charge, do the same with your own reputation and future. Only entrust your future to the best available DWI defense attorney.

Why do you need an expert DWI defense lawyer? Defendants charged with DWI crimes don't luck into good outcomes. Beating a DWI charge isn't a matter of rolling the dice, crossing your fingers, closing your eyes, and hoping for the best. Beating a DWI charge isn't a matter of chance. Like other good outcomes in life, you need to surround yourself with the right people, people who have the expert professional skills to help you. The single most important person who can help you beat a DWI charge is a high-reputation, high-skill, trustworthy, committed, and compassionate attorney who specializes in DWI defense. To beat a DWI charge, you don't need just any lawyer. You need Board Certified DWI Specialist Doug Murphy. Trust 2021 Houston DWI Lawyer of the Year Doug Murphy to beat your Texas DWI charge. Attorney Murphy is one of only two Texas lawyers holding both DWI Board Certification and Criminal Law Certification. With attorney Doug Murphy, you get the best available DWI defense.

Third, Cooperate with Your Expert DWI Defense Lawyer

Having a great DWI defense lawyer at your side is one thing. Cooperating with that great DWI defense lawyer is another thing. Forming a winning DWI defense team requires not just retaining a premier DWI defense lawyer but also working closely with that lawyer. Begin by telling your expert DWI defense lawyer the truth about what you did, what you didn't do, and what happened. Don't leave out the details. Don't gloss over the full, frank, and hard truth. What you tell your DWI defense lawyer is privileged information. You don't lose simply by telling your DWI defense lawyer the truth. On the contrary, you can lose by not telling your DWI defense lawyer the whole truth. Cooperation begins with you equipping your expert DWI defense lawyer with the whole truth of what happened.

You also need to listen to your expert DWI defense lawyer. Your DWI defense lawyer will likely tell you not to share crime-related information with anyone unless your lawyer tells you to do so. Listen to your lawyer. Don't ruin your defense by prattling on about your DWI charge to anyone who will listen. Your DWI defense lawyer will also tell you what the court requires of you for bail conditions, court appearances, alcohol-awareness classes, vehicle ignition interlock devices, and so on. Again, listen to your lawyer. Don't ignore your lawyer's instructions on when to appear, what to bring with you, and how to act when there. If your lawyer asks you to get certain medical, employment, or education records, then get them. If your lawyer tells you to meet with probation officers, counselors, or examiners, then do so.

Above all, promptly read and respond to your expert DWI defense lawyer's communications. If you get an email or text from your DWI defense lawyer, then read it immediately. If it requires a response back, either a simple yes or no or some other information, then respond back promptly. Plenty of DWI defendants lose their cases because they don't do what their lawyer plainly tells them to do, when they know or should have known of the plain consequences. DWI defendants hire expert DWI defense counsel for a reason: to listen to them and do as they advise. Cooperate with your expert DWI defense lawyer, and you'll have gone a long way toward beating your Texas DWI charge.

Fourth, Trust Your Expert DWI Defense Lawyer

While some of what a premier DWI defense lawyer does is to educate, instruct, and advise the client, a lot more of what a premier DWI defense lawyer does is independent of the client. You won't be directly negotiating an attractive plea bargain with the prosecutor who charged your DWI. Your expert DWI defense lawyer will conduct those negotiations. You won't be researching, writing, and arguing a motion to suppress unlawfully gained evidence. Your expert DWI defense lawyer will be doing so. You won't be identifying, preparing, subpoenaing, and examining lay and expert witnesses. You won't be requesting and discovering the prosecution's exonerating evidence. Your DWI defense lawyer should be doing these things on your behalf.

If you have retained national DWI expert speaker Doug Murphy for your Texas DWI defense, then you can trust that attorney Murphy is doing all these things and many other important tasks. And attorney Murphy will be doing these critical tasks with the highest level of diligence and skill. When you've got the best, let the best do their best work. Respect, appreciate, and support your expert DWI defense lawyer. Don't complain, discourage, and distract. Don't doubt, deter, and delay. Don't take matters out of your expert DWI defense lawyer's hands and put them into your own hands, only to blow your one opportunity for a sound DWI defense. Don't try to do an expert DWI defense lawyer's work when you already have the best DWI defense expert. Instead, trust Texas DWI Specialist Doug Murphy to do winning defense work.

Fifth, Satisfy All Bail and Other Conditions

A DWI proceeding plainly involves a lot of critical work on the part of your Board Certified DWI Specialist. You are unlikely to beat a Texas DWI charge without a skilled DWI defense lawyer in your corner. But while the DWI charge remains pending, the DWI defendant also has critical work to accomplish. You must do more than hire a great DWI lawyer, while cooperating with and trusting that lawyer. You have your own work to do. What you do, or fail to do, can have a huge influence on the outcome of your DWI charge. Your DWI lawyer's work is important, but your work is critical, too.

The primary work of a DWI defendant, after retaining and cooperating with an expert DWI defense lawyer, is to satisfy all conditions of bail. Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Article 17.15 allows the judicial officer at arraignment to set bail conditions. Bail, including any bond the court may require, enables the DWI defendant to get out of jail while awaiting further proceedings on the DWI charge. Once the court sets bail conditions, the DWI defendant needs to comply with those conditions, or the DWI defendant may land back in jail. The court sets bail to ensure the defendant does as ordered, including returning to court. The court also sets bail to ensure the safety of any crime victim and the community. Common bail conditions for a DWI charge include:

  • installing and using an ignition interlock device in the defendant's car;
  • attending and participating in alcohol-awareness education;
  • avoiding any use or abuse of intoxicants including alcohol and drugs;
  • submitting to alcohol and drug testing;
  • avoiding rearrest on DWI or other criminal charges; and
  • home curfews or home confinement.

Why is getting out of jail and staying out of jail important to your winning DWI defense? First, complying with bail shows the court your good character for lawfulness. Think of it: if you can't even comply with the court's bail conditions, then why should the court trust you to comply with DWI laws and other laws. One of the worst things you can do to ruin your own DWI defense is to violate bail conditions and land back in jail awaiting trial. Complying with bail conditions may mean giving up your favorite pastime, especially if it takes you to a place furnishing alcohol. It may mean going here and there for education and testing. Bail conditions can be annoying and frustrating. Yet you have three things you must do with bail conditions: comply, comply, and comply. Don't ruin a sound DWI defense by violating bail conditions.

Sixth, Know Who's on Your Side

Anytime you see someone celebrating their success, whether at a graduation, promotion, or other event, you tend to see them thanking others for contributing to their success. The same can be true of a winning DWI defense. You might think a winning DWI defense is all up to the expert DWI defense lawyer and DWI defendant. But many DWI defendants who finally prevail, beating the DWI charges, will give due credit to family members, friends, employers, mentors, coaches, or others who have stood behind them through the DWI proceeding. Getting into a DWI charge can involve hanging around with the wrong friends. Getting out of a DWI charge can conversely involve hanging around with the right friends.

Why does having others on your side help in a DWI proceeding? DWI proceedings can bring dark days, when things don't seem to be going so well. On such a dark day, you may need someone to believe in you more than you believe in yourself. That's what some family members and friends can do for you: help you keep going in the right direction. You just need to know who's on your side and who's not. If you face a DWI charge, you don't need discouragement and negativity. The DWI charge itself supplies the negativity. You need people who behave well, believe in you, and maybe even believe that you can behave better. Some say that you can tell where you're going to be in five or ten years by looking at your friends. To beat a DWI charge, find friends who are in a good frame and want to see you in a better frame than the DWI charge has put you.

Seventh, Make a Plan Beyond the DWI Charge

The thought may at first seem odd, but a winning DWI defense should do more than simply beat the DWI charge. What good does beating a DWI charge do if your future remains just as bleak as before? Indeed, in a sense, beating a DWI charge can require convincing the court, jurors, prosecutors, lay and expert witnesses, probation officers, and others that you have a future beyond another DWI. The DWI defendant who demonstrates confidence in a successful future beyond the present DWI charge can go a long way toward beating the DWI charge. What everyone who judges the DWI defendant wants to know is whether the DWI defendant has a law-abiding, flourishing, secure, and safe future. A winning DWI defense can involve identifying and communicating that future. And if the DWI defendant doesn't have a flourishing future in mind, then the DWI defendant, with expert DWI defense help, should plan that future and begin to put it in place.

Courts, after all, commonly require alcohol education, abstaining from alcohol and drugs, and staying out of bars and clubs, as conditions for bail. Courts require these conditions to point the DWI defendant toward a better future. But a winning DWI defense doesn't simply involve complying with court-ordered education. A better approach is for the DWI defendant to do those positive, future-looking actions on the defendant's own, without the necessity of a court order. In one sense, a DWI proceeding is like training wheels for the defendant whose riding just went off the rails into a DWI charge. Courts, prosecutors, probation officers, counselors, and instructors are all putting up guard rails to guide the DWI defendant. Again, a better approach than simply staying within the guard rails is for the DWI defendant to come up with a more positive plan for flourishing.

The best work that Board Certified DWI Specialist Doug Murphy does is not simply to get another defendant off of a DWI charge. Attorney Murphy aims to do far more for the DWI defendant than simply beat the charge. The aim of attorney Murphy's preeminent DWI defense is not to turn the defendant loose to commit another DWI. The deeper goal of attorney Murphy's DWI representation is to ensure that, after beating the DWI charge, the defendant never faces another DWI charge. That larger goal is perfectly consistent with the court's own aim in a DWI proceeding, and the prosecutor's deeper aim, too, whether the court and prosecutor commonly recognize it or not. The criminal justice system doesn't exist simply to catch and punish wrongdoers. The system is not entirely retributive, not entirely or even primarily to make the wrongdoing defendant suffer. The system's deeper aim is instead to ensure that the defendant and others do not commit further such wrongs.

Attorney Murphy is most satisfied with his ability now, after many years of winning DWI defense practice, to see how his former DWI clients have prospered. An expert DWI defense lawyer isn't a social worker or life coach. It's not the DWI defense lawyer's direct role to mentor clients into life success. Yet a lawyer professional can be an immensely positive influence on a client facing a daunting DWI charge. Let attorney Murphy be that positive influence. Even while your DWI charge asks you to look down and back, instead look upward and forward. If you have education or a certification to complete, then go for it, despite the pending DWI charge. If you have a job promotion within reach, then apply for it, despite the pending DWI charge. Take the confidence attorney Murphy instills in you, and put that confidence to good use so that five or ten years later, you can look back on the DWI charge as your positive turning point. Plan for life success, and execute the plan.

Finally, Continue to Trust in a Winning DWI Defense

One of the last things you need to do to ensure a winning DWI defense is to continue to trust that a winning DWI defense is possible. Your DWI proceedings are likely at points to discourage you. You may not understand why the proceedings are taking so long, when you want and need to get the DWI charge behind you. You may not appreciate the prosecution's rigid stance on plea bargains, adjournments, or other matters of ordinary courtesy. You may not respect the judge's interim rulings on the lawfulness of police stops and searches, or as to the admissibility of disputed evidence. You may even wonder whether your expert DWI defense lawyer is really doing as promised and represented.

The problem with doubting whether you can really and truly beat your DWI charge is that doubt can lead to despair, which can lead to bad choices affecting your winning DWI defense. Bail violations, for instance, don't usually just pop out of thin air. Bail violations more often occur when the DWI defendant gets down and depressed about the whole DWI proceeding. Then, it's off to the bar or club where the DWI violation occurs. You must instead keep your head up. Don't despair. Don't listen to that nagging, negative voice in your head. When your DWI proceeding begins to discourage you, remember to trust in your winning DWI defense.

That's another reason why you should retain the best available DWI defense representation: you can always trust that 2021 Houston DWI Lawyer of the Year Doug Murphy will not let you down. Attorney Murphy is your antidote to despair. You not only need an effective lawyer, one who can help you form a winning DWI defense. You also need to know that you can trust that lawyer. In that sense, it's not much different than hiring a super-successful coach for your team. Everyone on the team can stop worrying about losing and instead pay attention to the things that produce winning. You need to trust and believe in your lawyer. Attorney Murphy doesn't share his outstanding credentials in order to brag. He instead wants you to know that you have every reason to trust him. And when you trust him, you avoid despair. You instead recommit even in your dark days to the habits and practices that produce winning. Make yourself a winner by hiring a winner.

Retain Premier Representation for a Winning DWI Defense

And that's the takeaway. Above all, you should retain preeminent Texas DWI defense representation if you truly want a winning DWI defense. Winners produce winning. You have plenty on the line, facing a DWI charge, to commit yourself and your resources to winning, to beating the DWI charge. And you have the way to win, to beat the DWI charge. That way begins with knowing what's at stake, retaining the best available representation, and cooperating with and trusting your expert DWI defense lawyer. You then need to satisfy all bail conditions. You should gather your supportive family members and friends because you need them on your team. Then, make a plan for success beyond beating the DWI charge. That plan can help you beat the charge. And finally, trust in your winning DWI defense.

If you face a DWI charge, don't let your charge become a conviction. Retain Board Certified DWI Specialist Doug Murphy for aggressive and winning advocacy of your DWI defense. Hundreds of winning clients have done so. Set your course for success. Trust 2021 Houston DWI Lawyer of the Year Doug Murphy not only to beat your Texas DWI charge but to help you become a winner. Attorney Murphy is one of only two Texas lawyers holding both DWI Board Certification and Criminal Law Certification. Contact Doug Murphy Law Firm online or at (713) 229-8333 to discuss your case today.

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If you are facing DWI or other criminal charges in Texas, contact our office today to discuss your case, so we can begin working on your defense. Please provide only your personal email and cell phone number so that we can immediately and confidentially communicate with you.

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