What Do I Do After a DWI Arrest?
Answers & Advice After You've Been Arrested
Whether this is your first DWI charge or you've been down this road before, any type of drunk driving charge is serious business. You need immediate legal help. What you do in the first few hours and days after being charged with DWI can make all the difference.
At Crain Lewis Brogdon, LLP, our Dallas DWI attorneys have helped hundreds of people in your situation. We won't tell you this is going to be easy, but we will tell you that it's worth the fight. A drunk driving conviction on your record will stay with you the rest of your life, and it can have long-term consequences.
Contact us online or call (214) 301-5007 if you have been charged with DWI in Texas.
Why You Need to Hire an Experienced DWI Defense Attorney
Are you thinking about saving money by using a public defender or handling your drunk driving case yourself? Think about this: an experienced lawyer understands the strategies that police and prosecutors use to win their cases; you don't. An experienced attorney can protect you from saying or doing things that can later be used against you—you may not realize you are hurting your own case.
Further Reading: What Not to Do When Stopped for DWI in Texas
A public defender, while experienced, has a hundred cases on his plate at one time. How much preparation does he have time to do? When you hire your own DWI defense lawyer, you have someone who will meet with you personally, who will review the facts of your case and conduct any necessary investigation, and who will stand by you throughout the entire process, from ALR hearing to plea bargaining or trial.
Defense Against DWI Test Results
Everything you say or do after a traffic stop is being videotaped, and that videotape can be used as evidence against you. Don't make the job of the prosecutor easier—avoid giving any hard evidence. Ask to see an attorney as soon as you realize that you have been stopped for suspicion of driving while intoxicated. Your defense attorney will want your case to come down to the police officer's opinion about your driving and actions after the stop.
At the Police Station
The police are required to read you your rights and to explain the consequences of taking or refusing to take the breath test or blood test for a blood alcohol concentration (BAC). Refusing the breathalyzer test does not mean that you are pleading guilty or that you will face tougher criminal penalties. It may mean that you face a longer period of driver's license suspension. An experienced attorney at Crain Lewis Brogdon, LLP will explain how your decision to refuse the breath or blood test is likely to affect the outcome of your case.
If you have prior DWIs or you were involved in an accident with injuries, you could be facing more serious charges, such as felony DWI or intoxication manslaughter. It's vital that you say nothing to the police about the circumstances of your traffic stop or behavior until your lawyer is at your side.
Your ALR Hearing
A DWI charge involves two different cases: a criminal case and an administrative license revocation (ALR) hearing. For many people, saving their driver's license or securing an occupational driver's license is just as important as preventing a conviction for the criminal offense.
You have only 15 calendar days to contact the Department of Public Safety to schedule a hearing regarding your driver's license suspension. You will not need an attorney to handle this, but a Dallas DWI lawyer will know the procedures, the hearing officers, and how to use available evidence to your advantage. Your attorney may also be able to appear in court on your behalf, so you can remain on the job.
The Criminal DWI Case
Depending upon the charges against you, you may or may not be required to appear in court with your lawyer. In either case, your attorney needs to be completely familiar with the facts of your case, as well as the personal story behind those facts.
When you talk with your DWI defense lawyer, be completely honest. Were you driving on a revoked license? If drugs were found in your car, what were the circumstances? Every detail of events leading up to the traffic stop and your behavior at the scene can help us be prepared. There are often effective defense strategies that can help us get the charges dismissed or reduced to a non-DWI offense.
Your attorney can't help you if you don't work in full cooperation. When your lawyers need answers, be quick to respond as completely as possible. Your attorney is working toward the best possible outcome for your case. Our primary goal is to keep you out of jail, so when you speak to us, you can trust we are on your side.
Contact Crain Lewis Brogdon, LLP, today for your free consultation—call (214) 301-5007 or schedule one online.