In the Houston area, more often than many would think, a large number of DWI arrests occur as a result of a person who is Driving Under the Influence of Drugs, not alcohol. Unless the criminal charge is against a juvenile, the drunk driving or “driving under the influence of drugs” charge will be considered DWI.
How Are Drugs Defined?
“Drugs” are considered to be illegal narcotics, controlled substances, or prescription drugs. Regardless of which type of substance you’ve been accused of being impaired by, if you’re stopped by the police, and suspected of driving while you’re under the influence of a substance that has caused your impairment, you’ll be arrested, jailed, and criminally charged.
A Risk To Public Safety
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice and the Texas Department of Public Safety hold a position that drivers who are operating their vehicle while under the influence of drugs constitute a risk to public safety.
Houston Police Target “Drugged Drivers”
Houston area law enforcement agencies have taken a proactive attitude towards finding new ways to detect drivers who may be operating their vehicles while impaired.
Drugged Driving, as it is commonly referred, has influenced the Houston Police Department to maintain a rather large staff of what can be referred to as DRE’s or “drug recognition experts” who are trained to identify if a person is high/impaired or not.
When a person is suspected of driving under the influence of a substance other than alcohol, a DRE may be called to the scene to assess the driver for signs of impairment.
Criminal Penalties For DUI In Texas
DUI, first offenses, are misdemeanor offenses in the state of Texas. If convicted of DUI you’ll face a fine that can reach up to $2000, and a prison sentence of no more than 180 days in jail. Your Texas Drivers License will also be suspended, and you may be required to attend classed related to the substance you’ve accused of abusing.
Charged With DUI? Talk With A Lawyer
Although first offense DUI cases don’t carry as harsh penalties as more serious crimes, keeping the criminal charge off your record should be enough motivation for you talk with a few attorneys that may be able to find an “out” for you.
Once your case is reviewed by qualified, and experienced, Houston criminal defense attorney, you may find that your rights were violated, the police made some mistakes, or that the police have no evidence. Every case is different. If you have questions about your particular situation we highly recommend that you consult with a lawyer as soon as possible.