A 38-year-old semi-truck driver led Texas police on a 37-mile long pursuit that spanned three different counties. The incident began when officers noticed the truck “erratically swerving” in and out of lanes of traffic. The driver refused to yield to the officers' request to pull over. Instead, he continued to drive, making his way through residential neighborhoods and Texas highways. He even attempted to run over several deputies during the chase.
Police were ultimately able to stop the truck by puncturing the tires with spike strips. Once the truck came to a halt, police officers discovered that the driver was not alone. Instead, he was accompanied by his wife and two young children. He was promptly arrested for evading police, aggravated assault with a motor vehicle, and felony DWI.
Driving With Young Children Triggers Felony DWI Charges
The semi-truck driver was arrested on suspicion of DWI after leading police on a lengthy pursuit across three Texas counties. He will face felony DWI charges since his two young children - aged one and eight - were in the vehicle. If convicted of DWI with a child passenger, which is a State Jail Felony, the driver could face up to 2 years behind bars and be required to pay $10,000 in criminal fines. His driver's license will also be at risk. The consequences may be more severe since he holds a commercial license.
Impact of a DWI on a Commercial Driver's License
Drivers are required to obtain a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) to operate certain large vehicles in the state of Texas. It's easier to get a DWI if you have a CDL. Why? The legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit is much lower. State law prohibits CDL drivers from operating a motor vehicle with a BAC at or above .04 percent. Consuming one or two alcoholic beverages in an hour could elevate a CDL driver's BAC above the legal limit.
The penalties for DWI are enhanced when you hold a CDL:
- First DWI: CDL suspension for 1 year
- First DWI, Hazardous Materials: CDL suspension for 3 years, and
- Second DWI, Hazardous Materials: Permanent disqualification for CDL.
Any driver who uses their commercial vehicle to commit a felony - including felony DWI - will be ineligible for a CDL for life.
Drivers must also notify their employer of their DWI within 30 days. This DWI, paired with the loss of the driver's commercial license, can have adverse consequences at work. Many CDL drivers find that they're forced to look for a new line of work after a serious DWI conviction. Employers have the right to refuse to retain or hire drivers with a DWI on their record.
The consequences of a DWI can affect many aspects of your life. Your job may even be at risk. It's important for you to defend yourself if you've been arrested on suspicion of DWI in Houston. Hiring an experienced DWI defense lawyer can help you secure the best possible result in your criminal case. Contact the Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. to schedule a free consultation. We're here to help you fight to protect your future. Call today to learn more.