Situations Involving Both A DWI And A Reckless Driving Charge
While both reckless driving and driving while intoxicated (DWI) charges are concerning criminal offenses, they are distinct offenses with different penalties. In order to fully understand your options following an arrest for one or both of these offenses, talk to a Houston DWI lawyer. An attorney can share with you the differences between a reckless driving conviction and a DWI conviction, as well as letting you know what happens when a person is facing both charges.
Reckless Driving and DWI Charge Differences
Reckless driving is defined as driving with willful or wanton disregard for public safety. In Texas, reckless driving is a misdemeanor offense and could occur if a person is swerving in and out of traffic or exhibiting other unsafe driving practices. Fines and driver’s license suspension could be possible, depending on the circumstances.
A DWI, on the other hand, means an individual was operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher. A first-time DWI offense is typically a Class B misdemeanor, which can result in fines, license suspension, and months in jail. Penalties escalate for repeat offenders.
There are key differences between these serious offenses, although it is possible for a person to be charged with both at once. One of the main differences is that a DWI charge is based on the driver’s BAC level, while reckless driving charges are based on the actions of the driver. Often a DWI charge carries more penalties than a reckless driving charge, because on top of the fines and license suspension that are possible for a reckless driving conviction, a DWI conviction can also result in community service and mandatory counseling.
Facing Both Charges Requires a Strong Legal Defense
If you are facing both reckless driving and DWI charges in the state of Texas, you will need to mount a strong legal defense as you are likely facing steep consequences. A skilled criminal defense attorney can help you explore possible legal options and defenses, such as plea bargains, diversion programs, or questioning evidence.
In some cases, a DWI charge may be reduced to a reckless driving charge, which can result in lesser penalties, but it is important to note that this is not always possible, particularly if the driver’s BAC was significantly above the legal limit or in the event of aggravating circumstances, such as an accident or injury.
After an arrest, do not assume you understand the intricacies of Texas criminal law. Instead, hire an expert. A seasoned Houston DWI lawyer has the experience to review the details of your case and inform you of potential penalties and possible defense strategies.
Are you facing reckless driving and DWI charges? If so, connect with legal support without delay. An experienced attorney can argue for reduced charges or negotiate a plea bargain to minimize the impact of the charges on your life. Talk to the legal team at Ayson Law Firm about what is possible for your unique situation. Contact us today for a free consultation.