If you’ve recently been charged with a DWI, you may be desperately searching for answers on how to beat a DWI case in Texas. You’ve likely just lived through a nightmare scenario: a cop pulled you over on the side of the road, and you blew a .09 on the Breathalyzer. The cuffs went on, you were put in the back of the squad car and things started to seem pretty hopeless. You might have thought to yourself “they just proved me guilty” or “my life is ruined,” but that’s just what they want you to think.
DWI charges can be beaten. Houston DWI attorney Mark Thiessen of Thiessen Law Firm wins DWI cases all the time, and while each case is different, there are some consistent factors at play that police officers and prosecutors won’t tell you about. Before you give up hope and throw in the towel, check out some of these trial-tested courtroom strategies that could make the difference in your case.
How do I get a DWI dismissed in Texas?
You may already know the answer to “What is a DWI?” But if you don’t, a person is charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI) if they are caught driving a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, as suggested by the results of intoxication analysis or field sobriety testing. Being convicted of a DWI can come with some serious penalties including jail time, community service, license suspension, and hefty fines — especially if you’re facing charges for intoxication manslaughter.
So, is it worth fighting a DWI? Can a DWI be reduced in Texas? Yes and yes! Whether or not you were guilty, there really is no benefit to pleading guilty to DWI in Texas at your initial hearing. Instead, you should hire an aggressive DWI lawyer who has experience successfully fighting these specific types of charges. Doing so could result in lesser penalties and in some cases, a Not Guilty verdict. But if you plead guilty immediately, you lose the chance to defend your rights, dismiss your charge, or argue for a better plea bargain.
Wondering about your chances of dismissal of DWI in Texas? Here are several defenses your lawyer might use in against a DWI charge:
1. Illegal stop
Cops, analysts and prosecutors slip up all the time, and when their goof-ups jeopardize someone’s freedom, it’s important to strike back. This includes determining whether the police officer had the right to stop you in the first place.
Thanks to the fourth amendment, you are protected from unlawful search and seizures. Unless the police officer had evidence to believe that you were committing a traffic violation or breaking the law, they cannot stop you. If you feel that the officer did not have just cause to perform a traffic stop, your attorney can analyze the evidence and may be able to use this as a defense to get your DWI dismissed.
2. Breath alcohol test is inaccurate
The Breathalyzer test can be compromised by numerous factors, leading to inaccurate readings. For instance, everything from human physiology to core body temperature can affect the results on a breathalyzer test. Not to mention the 10% margin of error on the breath test itself. If your lawyer is a lawyer-scientist, they can use these inaccuracies to get the evidence thrown out.
DWI chemical test victories:
- Warm, expired blood samples left out of proper refrigeration
- Dirty, expired test tubes that turned blood green
3. Look for errors
Any lawyer worth hiring will actively seek out any existing videos from your initial traffic stop and arrest. Given how lousy the science used by police to determine intoxication is, the police tape can sometimes serve as crucial evidence of an unfair arrest/accusation. When a client looks excellent on video, but the tests yield a high BAC, that makes it much easier for the jury to doubt the state’s evidence. Actions speak louder than words, so when your video shows you speaking clearly, walking straight and behaving like a sober person, that alleged .20 BAC starts looking like nonsense pretty fast.
Another piece of evidence to consider is the DWI report. Policemen make mistakes and this initial piece of documentation can show errors, incorrect statements, or a lack of information that create reasonable doubt as to your guilt.
See how Mark Thiessen was able to win a case for his client on account of lying and disobeying protocol during a traffic stop.
4. Field sobriety test is inaccurate or invalid
Field sobriety testing is a controversial subject in the legal world. These tests are created for you to fail, giving police officers a reason to arrest you. However, your DWI defense attorney can use this to your advantage in the case that your field sobriety test was improperly administered or done with faulty equipment.
What to do if you get a DWI
If you get a DWI, the first thing you should do is call a DWI attorney before speaking to anyone. Even with the best intentions, what you say could incriminate you, making it harder for your lawyer to get your case dismissed.
Do I need a lawyer for a DWI in Texas?
Although you do not need a lawyer to fight a DWI in Texas, it is highly recommended that you get one. Texas is known for having some of the harshest DWI penalties in the country. Without a lawyer, your chances of getting the charge dismissed, let alone getting off with lesser penalties, is severely impacted. That said, when looking to hire a DWI lawyer, you’ll want to find one who is also a lawyer-scientist so that they can use their expertise to review the evidence.
The benefits of hiring a lawyer-scientist
You know that old saying, “fight fire with fire”? Replace “fire” with “science” and you have one of the major keys to fighting a DWI in Texas. Determining intoxication is far more complicated than blowing into a box on the side of the road. When a good person’s freedom is on the line, test results should be airtight before the judge starts handing down a verdict. More often than not, that isn’t the case. A Lawyer-Scientist, possesses both the scientific and legal knowledge necessary to fight and discredit bad toxicology work, and cast enough reasonable doubt to win cases for their clients.
For starters, the most commonly used device to test blood alcohol levels in Texas is a machine called the Intoxilyzer 5000. Sounds fancy, right? It isn’t. This machine is horribly outdated and even uses the same microprocessor as an old Atari video game system.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, the science behind these tests is mostly junk. It utilizes the theory of infrared absorption, analyzing the behavior of light molecules after a suspect blows into the device. In theory, the infrared light will cause any detectable alcohol molecules to vibrate, which the machine then analyzes to determine a BAC score. The big problem is that a lot of things can set it off, including soy sauce, diet soda, aspirin and even common health problems! Blood tests may be harder to fight, but they are often mishandled and can be beaten by a lawyer who understands the science at play.
Looking to fight a DWI charge? You need Thiessen Law Firm on your side.
DWI charges are no joke. Even though the evidence behind the charges may be laughable, the consequences of a conviction are anything but that. For an aggressive defense that tackles your case from every angle, trust the experienced DWI lawyers at Thiessen Law Firm to represent you with respect and dedication. Mark Thiessen is Board Certified in DWI Defense Law, a lawyer-scientist, and knows how to beat a DWI case in Texas.
Give Mark Thiessen a call today at 713-864-9000 or fill out our online contact form to get started.
More Helpful Articles by Thiessen Law Firm:
- Is Delta 8 THC Legal in Texas?
- What’s A Super Lawyer?
- Is Prostitution Legal in Texas?
- How to Avoid a Boating While Intoxicated Charge
- Legal Drinking Age in Texas