Houston Boating While Intoxicated Lawyer
Spending a day out on a boat is a great way to take in the beautiful city of Houston, and it is not uncommon for people to have a drink while out on the water. In Texas, there are very serious laws about how much a person can consume while they are operating a boat. Violating these laws comes with very serious penalties and all too often, innocent people are charged. If you have been charged, it is critical that you speak with a Houston boating while intoxicated lawyer that can protect your rights.
Our Houston BWI Boating While Intoxicated Lawyer Defines the Offense
Just as it is against the law to drive a car while intoxicated, it is also illegal to operate a watercraft while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The law is the same for drivers and boat operators. No one in Houston is allowed to do either with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more. Anyone that is charged with boating while intoxicated will face class B misdemeanor charges if they do not have any previous offenses and their BAC was not above 0.15 percent.
Our Houston BWI Boating While Intoxicated Lawyer Can Help You Avoid Harsh Penalties
The penalties for even a first BWI conviction are harsh and they may include jail time. If the state prosecution can prove that you had a BAC of 0.08 percent or more, or that your mental or physical faculties were impaired, they may be able to secure a conviction against you. As a class B misdemeanor, you will face at least 72 hours in county jail, and up to 180 days. You will have to pay a maximum fine of $2,000, and your driver’s license will be suspended anywhere between 90 and 365 days.
A BWI charge becomes much more serious when a boat operator’s BAC is 0.15 percent or greater. This offense is a class A misdemeanor. If convicted, you face between 72 hours and one year in jail, as well as an automatic license suspension between 90 to 365 days.
Our Houston BWI Boating While Intoxicated Lawyer Can Prepare Your Defense
The defenses in a BWI case are often very similar to those in DWI cases. If field sobriety tests were performed and the results are now being used against you, the defense of “sea legs” may be available. If law enforcement conducted an illegal search, a lawyer can also get any evidence obtained as a result thrown out, so it cannot be used against you.
The probable cause defense is not available in BWI cases as it is with DWI cases. In Houston, law enforcement officials do not need probable cause to stop and come aboard your boat. They are also allowed to look for safety gear, such as lifejackets, which can make the defense of an illegal search more challenging. It is important to work with a Houston BWI boating while intoxicated lawyer that can overcome those challenges.
Call Our Houston BWI Boating While Intoxicated Lawyer Today
If you have been charged, do not fight a BWI on your own. At Ayson Law Firm, our BWI boating while intoxicated lawyer in Houston knows the best defense strategies that will help you retain your freedom. Call us today at 832-209-2297 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation.