If this is your first arrest for Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) or you have no previous convictions, you will be charged with a Misdemeanor DWI 1st offense. Depending on your blood alcohol concentration level, this could be a class B misdemeanor or a class A misdemeanor.Your case will be filed in a county court at law.
CLASS B Misdemeanor DWI
If this is your first DWI and your BAC is less than a .15 at the time your breath and or blood was taken, you will be charged with a Class B Misdemeanor DWI. The maximum range of punishment is up to 180 days and/ or a $3000 fine to be paid within 36 months. You most likely will not go back to jail or half to do any jail time as a condition of your probation. But each judge is a little different in how they proceed with sentencing. You most likely will not have a suspension on your license if you are convicted of a DWI 1st, but you will have to complete several courses and most likely have an ignition interlock on your car for half the term of probation.
Contact the lawyers at Soyars & Morgan immediately upon releases from jail. We are familiar with how each judge in San Antonio and surrounding areas proceeds with sentencing.
CLASS A misdemeanor DWI
If you have a previous conviction or your BAC is higher than a .15 you will be charged with a Class A Misdemeanor DWI. The maximum range of punishment is up to 365 days in the county jail and a fine. If you have a previous conviction, the maximum fine is $4500. If you have no conviction, but your BAC is above a .15 the maximum fine is up to $3000. You probably won’t do any more jail, but the judge will order ignition interlock for half the term of probation.
If you have a previous conviction, there could be 5 days in jail assessed as a condition of probation. This means that even if you are granted probation, the judge could still sentence you to 5 days in the county jail. Once you bond out of jail on a DWI 2nd you will be ordered to maintain and install ignition interlock as a condition of your bond. If you end up being convicted, you will have to continue having that device on your vehicle for half the term of probation. There could be a license suspension if you are convicted depending on when/where your prior conviction was. We are Soyars & Morgan Law understand that any conviction will impact your future. We will fight to prevent a conviction and any more jail time.
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A DWI OR DUI?
DWI stands for Driving While Intoxicated. DUI stands for Driving Under the Influence. Almost every state outside of Texas calls our DWI a DUI. A DUI in Texas is not the same thing. You will only be charged in Texas with a DUI if you are under the age of 21 and have any detectable amount of alcohol in your system. The officer can claim he smelled alcohol on your breath and if you are under the age of 21, this could be enough to convict you of DUI. A DUI is a Class C misdemeanor meaning, the judge cannot sentence you to any jail time if you are convicted. The greatest possible fine is $500. But there could be a driver’s license suspension. If you are under the age of 21 and you BAC is above a .08, most likely you will still be charged as a DWI.
Contact Soyars & Morgan Law if you have been charged with DUI or DWI! We will devise a strategic game plan to try to avoid a conviction on your criminal history. This can affect your career and family for years, so don’t leave it to chance.