Different Punishment Levels of DWI Charge

Different Punishment Levels of DWI Charge

Charlie explains the different punishment levels and their related charges after receiving a DWI charge in Texas.


Q: What is the lowest level of DWI in Texas?

A: The lowest level of DWI in Texas is a Class B Misdemeanor. This applies when a person has no prior DWI convictions and a blood alcohol content (BAC) of less than 0.15.

Q: What are the possible penalties for a Class B Misdemeanor DWI?

A: For a Class B Misdemeanor DWI, the punishment can be up to 180 days in county jail and up to a $2,000 fine. However, most cases result in probation, dismissal, or reduction to a lesser charge like obstruction of a highway.

Q: What constitutes a Class A Misdemeanor DWI in Texas?

A: A Class A Misdemeanor DWI is charged when someone has one prior DWI conviction or a BAC of 0.15 or greater.

Q: What are the consequences of a Class A Misdemeanor DWI?

A: This class can result in up to a year in county jail and a fine up to $4,000. Like Class B, these cases often end in probation, reduction to Class B, dismissal, or conversion to another charge.

Q: How is a DWI classified if there is a child passenger under 15 years of age?

A: If a DWI involves a child passenger under 15, it's classified as a State Jail Felony. This can lead to up to two years in state jail but is often subject to probation and possible reduction to a misdemeanor.

Q: What level of offense is charged for someone with two or more prior DWI convictions?

A: Two or more prior DWI convictions elevate the charge to a third-degree felony, which carries a sentence of two to ten years in prison. However, these can also be probated and potentially reduced back to a misdemeanor.

Q: Can out-of-state DWI convictions affect the classification in Texas?

A: Yes, out-of-state DWI convictions count if the statute under which the individual was convicted is similar to the Texas statute.

Q: Is it possible for a DWI felony charge to be reduced back to a misdemeanor?

A: Yes, depending on the circumstances and the prosecutor's discretion, a felony DWI charge can be reduced back to a misdemeanor.