Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)

 DUI / DWI Criminal Defense Attorney Carlo D'AngeloOk, so you've been arrested for DWI. Now what? A DWI arrest can create lots of problems. There's not only criminal consequences that come with a DWI arrest, you can also lose your driver's license. That means your liberty and your freedom to drive are on the line.

If you don't handle a DWI properly, you might end up with a license suspension that will keep you off the road for up to 2 years. That's where a qualified DWI attorney can step in and keep you on the road. 

Under Texas law: Driving while intoxicated (DWI) by drugs or alcohol in Texas is a criminal offense with potentially severe legal consequences. Law enforcement actively seeks out individuals who violate these laws, and many drivers may be surprised to learn that they can face DWI charges even after consuming only a few drinks. In certain cases, drivers may be arrested for DWI even if their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is below the legal limit. Texas DWI Attorney Carlo D'Angelo is an experienced DWI defense lawyer dedicated to protecting your rights and working to help mitigatge the consequences you may face if accused of drunk driving. In some instances, and depending upon the unique facts of the case, an expereicne DWI attorney may even be able to have your case dismissed or dropped by the State

  1. Understanding DWI Charges in Texas: A DWI charge in Texas typically results from operating a motor vehicle in a public place while intoxicated, which is defined as having a BAC of 0.08% or higher or not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties due to alcohol or drug consumption. It's essential to recognize that even if your BAC is below the legal limit, you may still face charges if law enforcement believes your faculties are impaired.

  2. Legal Consequences of a DWI Conviction: A DWI conviction in Texas can carry serious penalties, including:

A. First Offense:

  • Up to 180 days in jail
  • A fine up to $2,000
  • License suspension for up to 1 year
  • Annual surcharge up to $2,000 for 3 years to retain driver's license

B. Second Offense:

  • 30 days to 1 year in jail
  • A fine up to $4,000
  • License suspension for up to 2 years
  • Annual surcharge up to $2,000 for 3 years to retain driver's license

C. Third Offense:

  • 2 to 10 years in prison
  • A fine up to $10,000
  • License suspension for up to 2 years
  • Annual surcharge up to $2,000 for 3 years to retain driver's license
  1. How an Experienced DWI Defense Lawyer Can Help: An experienced DWI defense lawyer can employ various strategies to help reduce the consequences you face or potentially have your case dismissed or dropped. Some of these strategies may include:

A. Challenging the legality of the traffic stop B. Disputing the accuracy of field sobriety tests C. Questioning the reliability of breathalyzer or blood test results D. Presenting evidence of medical conditions or other factors that may have influenced test results

Conclusion: If you are facing DWI charges in Texas, it's crucial to have a skilled criminal defense attorney by your side. Tyler Texas DWI Attorney Carlo D'Angelo and his dedicated team understand the complexities of DWI cases and are committed to protecting your rights and helping you fully investigate your criminal case.  Contact Carlo today for a confidential consultation to discuss your case and learn how he can help protect your rights. 

 Let's discuss Texas Drunk Driving Laws: Driving while intoxicated (DWI) charges in Texas are governed by Texas Penal Code Title 10, Chapter 49. These laws define "intoxicated" in two distinct ways and impose different blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limits for specific classes of drivers. At [Law Firm Name], our skilled criminal defense attorneys understand the complexities of DWI laws and are committed to defending your rights. In this article, we'll discuss how the Texas Penal Code defines intoxication, the methods used by law enforcement officers to gather evidence, and the importance of having an experienced DWI defense lawyer on your side.

  1. Defining Intoxication Under Texas Penal Code Title 10, Chapter 49: Intoxication is defined in two distinct ways under Texas law:

A. Not having the normal use of mental and physical faculties due to the consumption of drugs or alcohol; and/or B. Having a BAC of .08 percent or more.

  1. BAC Limits for Specific Classes of Drivers: Certain classes of drivers are subject to lower BAC limits, including:

A. Drivers under 21 years of age: Prohibited from driving with any detectable amount of alcohol in their system. B. Commercial drivers: Subject to a .04 percent legal limit.

  1. Investigating DWI: Methods Used by Law Enforcement Officers: To gather evidence of intoxication and impairment, law enforcement officers employ various methods, including:

A. Objective measures: Blood, breath, or urine tests to determine a driver's BAC. B. Observations: The driver's appearance, behavior, and presence or odor of alcohol. C. Field sobriety tests: A variety of tests designed to assess the driver's physical and cognitive faculties.

It is important to note that a BAC above the legal limit is not necessary for a DWI charge in Texas. Probable cause indicating intoxication is enough for an officer to arrest you.

Field Sobriety Exercies Administered to Texas DWI Suspects: 

In Texas, law enforcement officers utilize field sobriety exercises to assess whether a driver is intoxicated, often leading to DWI charges. These tests, approved under the DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST) Instructor Guide, aim to evaluate a driver's balance, coordination, and cognitive abilities. DWI Criminal Lawyer Carlo D'Angelo is well-versed in the intricacies of these exercises and can help challenge their validity in your DWI case. Let's discuss the different types of field sobriety exercises Texas law enforcement officers generally administer.

  1. Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFSTs): There are three primary field sobriety tests approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and outlined in the DWI Detection and SFST Instructor Guide:

A. Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) Test: In this test, an officer observes the suspect's eyes as they follow a moving object, usually a pen or flashlight, to detect involuntary jerking movements (nystagmus) that may indicate intoxication.

B. Walk-and-Turn Test: The walk-and-turn test requires the suspect to walk heel-to-toe along a straight line for nine steps, turn around, and walk back in the same manner. The officer will look for signs of impairment, such as losing balance, stepping off the line, or not following instructions.

C. One-Leg Stand Test: During the one-leg stand test, the suspect must stand on one foot while raising the other foot approximately six inches off the ground and counting aloud until instructed to stop. The officer evaluates the suspect's balance and ability to follow instructions.

  1. Non-Standardized Field Sobriety Tests: Although not approved by the NHTSA, some officers may administer additional tests, such as:

A. Finger-to-Nose Test: The suspect must close their eyes, tilt their head back, and touch the tip of their nose with their index finger. This test evaluates coordination and balance.

B. Alphabet Test: The suspect is asked to recite a portion of the alphabet, testing their cognitive function and memory.

  1. The Importance of an Experienced DWI Defense Attorney: Having a skilled criminal defense attorney on your side is crucial when facing DWI charges involving field sobriety tests. An experienced attorney can:

A. Challenge the validity of the tests. B. Question the officer's training and administration of the tests. C. Present alternative explanations for poor test performance, such as medical conditions or fatigue.

Carlo D'Angelo Criminal DWI / DUI Defense Attorney /Lawyer

The DIC-24 Statutory Warning:  The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) DIC-24 form, also known as the "Statutory Warning," is a document that law enforcement officers must provide to individuals who are suspected of driving while intoxicated (DWI). This form outlines the legal rights and consequences associated with refusing a breath or blood test when under suspicion of DWI.

Under the Texas Implied Consent Law, individuals who operate a motor vehicle on Texas roads automatically consent to submit to a chemical test of their breath or blood if lawfully arrested for DWI. If a suspect refuses to take the test, they face the following consequences:

  1. License Suspension: Refusing a breath or blood test may result in an automatic driver's license suspension. For a first-time refusal, the suspension period is 180 days. For subsequent refusals within ten years, the suspension period increases to two years Admissibility in Court: If the case goes to trial, the fact that the suspect refused a breath or blood test can be used as evidence against them, potentially leading to a DWI conviction. Admissibility in Court: If the case goes to trial, the fact that the suspect refused a breath or blood test can be used as evidence against them, potentially leading to a DWI conviction.Mandatory Installation of an Ignition Interlock Device (IID): In some cases, a judge may require the installation of an IID in the suspect's vehicle following a refusal. This device prevents the vehicle from starting unless the driver provides a breath sample that is free of alcohol.

Anyone who operates a motor vehicle in Texas is subject to the “implied consent” rule, which holds that by obtaining a driver’s license and operating a motor vehicle, you have consented to a chemical test if a law enforcement officer suspects that you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Because of this rule, you can lose your license if you refuse such testing. This suspension is completely separate from the criminal part of a DWI case, and can result in a license suspension of 90 days to two years.
Drivers will not lose their license immediately after a refusal takes place – after a refusal, you have 15 days to request an administrative hearing regarding your suspension. If you do not request a hearing, an automatic suspension begins 40 days after your refusal. The administrative hearings are handled by the State Office of Administrative Hearings, and can be requested online.

phone icon


The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon advertisements.  Before you decide, ask us to send you free written information about our qualifications and experience. This web site is designed for general information only.  The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of an attorney/client relationship.