DWI Penalties in Fort Bend, Harris Counties

Texas Penal Code § 49.04 defines the offense of DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED as follows: A person commits an offense if the person is intoxicated while operating a motor vehicle in a public place.

Under Texas law, "intoxicated" means:

  • Not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties by reason of the introduction of alcohol, a controlled substance, a drug, a dangerous drug, a combination of two or more of those substances, or any other substance into the body; or
  • Having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more.

A Summary Of DWI Penalties Are Listed Below:

In most DWI cases, you may be eligible for probation, but there is no guarantee that you will receive a probated jail sentence or fine. A second DWI conviction could require that you spend 72 hours in jail even if you do receive probation. If you are convicted of the intoxication assault and receive probation, a minimum of 30 days in jail must be served as a condition of probation. Furthermore, to receive probation upon being convicted of intoxication manslaughter you must serve a minimum of 120 days in jail.

DWI Penalties

  • First DWI offense: a first-offense DWI conviction includes a fine not to exceed $2000.00 and/or the possibility of serving jail time from 72 hours to 180 days, and a driver's license suspension of 90 to 365 days. (Class B Misdemeanor)
  • Second DWI offense: the punishment range increases to no more than a $4000.00 fine and/or jail from 30 days to one year, and a possible driver's license suspension ranging from 180 days to 2 years. (Class A Misdemeanor)
  • Third DWI offense: here you may receive a fine up to $10,000.00 and/or 2 to 10 years of imprisonment, and suspension of your driver's license ranging from 180 days to 2 years. (3rd Degree Felony)
  • DWI with an open alcohol container (first offense): in addition to the penalty referenced above there is a minimum of 6 days in jail and a fine of no more than $2000.00 (Class B Misdemeanor)
  • DWI with an accident where serious bodily injury occurred as a proximate cause of the intoxication: this crime is called "intoxication assault," and upon a DWI conviction you may serve a minimum of 2 years and up to a maximum of 10 years in jail. Additionally, you may have to pay a fine up to $10,000.00 (3rd Degree Felony)
  • DWI where a death has occurred as a proximate cause of the intoxication: this crime is called "intoxication manslaughter." Upon a DWI conviction you may have to pay a fine up to $10,000.00 and/or be imprisoned from 2 to 20 years (Intoxication Manslaughter or Manslaughter with use of Deadly Weapon are both 2nd Degree Felonies)

Protect yourself! If you have been accused of a DWI, call Sugar Land's DWI defense attorney, David Kiatta.