KBTX, a Bryan, Texas, station, recently reported that police had arrested an area resident for “driving while intoxicated” (DWI). According to the news report, the alleged offender crashed his vehicle into a semi-truck, and, shortly after contact, his own vehicle caught fire. Thankfully, no one was injured in the accident, but damage to the vehicles was, of course, substantial.
DWI cases are always serious, but they are much more of a concern when there is an accident.
A car accident may result in significantly increased penalties for a DWI charge. Typically, a first-offense DWI is a class B misdemeanor; however, prosecutors may increase the severity of the charges if an accident has occurred. In addition to DWI charges, you could also be charged with other related crimes, such as reckless damage or criminal mischief. The exact charges will depend on both the amount of the alcohol the driver consumed and the damage caused by the accident.
While your insurance will likely cover the damage to another person's vehicle (and other property damage, if it occurred), you'll still be responsible for any fines, fees, and other costs that arise out of a criminal proceeding. And you'll be paying high rates for insurance for years to come. All told, the financial penalties (formal and informal) can add up to thousands of dollars.
Don't underestimate the effect of a DWI. It can impact every aspect of your life, from your ability to drive to obtaining a mortgage or getting a job. But it's important to keep in mind that a DWI charge is not a conviction. People can, and do, successfully defend against DWI charges. But it's essential to get a DWI Specialist as soon as possible.
Houston attorney Doug Murphy is one of only two attorneys in the state of Texas who is Board Certified in both Criminal Law and DWI Defense. Previously having served as President of the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association, he is a national expert on DWI litigation, and, year-after-year, he is heralded as being one of US News & World Report's Best Lawyers in America.
If you are facing charges involving a DWI car accident in Texas, contact Doug Murphy’s office today to discuss your case and begin working on your defense.