The elements of a DWI (driving while intoxicated) case consist of operating a motor vehicle in a public place while intoxicated. Intoxicated means either that you have lost the normal use of your mental or physical faculties or have a blood alcohol concentration over .08%.
The possible penalties for a DWI charge can vary depending on:
- If there were other passengers in the vehicle; or
- If anyone was injured.
In some cases, in Harris County, a person charged with DWI may be eligible for the DIVERT program, which is a type of probation under which a person can keep the charge off of their record and eventually obtain an expunction.
To be charged with a DWI offense, the prosecution and arresting officer must be able to prove that:
- There was reasonable suspicion to pull you over;
- You were intoxicated while operating the vehicle (you had lost the normal use of your mental or physical faculties or had a blood alcohol concentration over .08%).
- There was probable cause to place you under arrest for a DWI.
However, keep in mind that having an experienced criminal defense lawyer like Nathaniel Pitoniak on your side can increase your chances of reducing your penalties, or achieving a dismissal or acquittal (not guilty verdict), if you are faced with a DWI charge.
It is important to act quickly once you have been arrested for DWI. You have the opportunity to try to fight your license suspension if you request a hearing within 15 days of your arrest.
Defense Strategies for a DWI
Although every case is different, your defense strategy for challenging a DWI charge may depend on:
- Improper stop. We may argue that you were wrongfully pulled over and that the arresting officer lacked reasonable suspicion to make the traffic stop.
- The accuracy of field sobriety tests. We may argue that the field sobriety tests you took part in at the time of the stop were either improperly administered or inaccurate.
- The accuracy of chemical tests. The blood or breath test you were given may be inadmissible. If a Judge suppresses this evidence, a jury will not consider this evidence in determining whether you were intoxicated.
Why Do You Need a Defense Lawyer?
If you are in Harris County or surrounding counties such as Fort Bend, Montgomery, or Galveston County and have been charged with a DWI, you will need an experienced and successful criminal defense lawyer like Nathaniel Pitoniak to provide you with legal advice and representation in a Texas court of law. As a former prosecutor in his tenth year of practice, he has handled many DWI cases and will be able to create a strategic defense for your case, possibly saving you nearly hundreds to thousands of dollars in fines, a license suspension, and a permanent criminal record depending upon the facts and circumstances of your case. Call Nathaniel Pitoniak at the Pitoniak Law Firm at (832) 315-6283 for a free consultation today.