Harris County DWI Lawyer

First Offense DWI Attorneys in Harris County

After an Houston driving while intoxicated (DWI) arrest, the arresting officer will bring the defendant back to the Harris County police station for booking. The officer will then file a report, known as a probable cause affidavit, with the court. This report lists the allegations against the defendant. After reviewing the affidavit and the defendant’s criminal history, the judge will set the bail amount. When determining the amount of bail, the judge uses severity of the crime and prior arrest history as the two most relevant factors.

Harris County DWI Arrests

Harris County has seen a dramatic increase in DWI arrests due to the implementation of a new task force. The Harris County Sheriff’s Office recently announced the formation of an eight-person DWI Task Force, which will be responsible for actively seeking out and arresting individuals driving under the influence. This is just one part of their larger efforts to reduce drunk driving incidents and make roads safer for residents.

The task force will be working year round, but especially during peak times when drivers are most likely to be impaired. They’ll patrol areas around bars, sporting events, and other places where people are likely to have been drinking alcohol. The team is well equipped with specialized training, advanced equipment, and access to criminal databases that can help them quickly identify potential offenders. The Harris County Sheriff’s Office hopes that these increased efforts will result in fewer drunk driving accidents on their roads.

The Bail Amount

In Harris County, bail amount may be set as low as $500 and as high as $10,000. The bail for most first time DWI offenses may range between $1500 and $3000 if there are no prior arrests. Because there is no set amount for a drunk-driving offense, the decision is ultimately left to the discretion of the judge reviewing the case.

Bail may be paid in one of two ways—you can pay the full amount or you can use a bail bondsman. A bail bondsman can help if you do not have the money to post bail; you simply pay a 10% fee and put something up for collateral. If you show up for your court appearance, you will get your bail money back; if you fail to show up, you forfeit your money and a warrant may be issued for your arrest.

In Harris County, bail is set by the judge between the hours of 7 a.m. and 1 a.m. This means that if a person is arrested for DWI after 1 a.m., his or her bail will be set in the morning—or even later. If this is the case, the defendant could be released during the night if an attorney performs a late night “hobby” release.

Harris County BAC Defenses

If you are facing an Texas driving while intoxicated (DWI) charge, a number of blood alcohol defenses may be used to your benefit. Because many prosecutors rely heavily on the results of a breath or blood test, their case may be weakened if a defense attorney can prove that the results are inaccurate.

Each person metabolizes alcohol differently based on his or her gender, size, or other physical conditions. However, breathalyzer machines are designed to estimate the average person’s blood alcohol content (BAC). A skilled DWI attorney can investigate your BAC test to determine if there were any factors that may have produced an inflated reading.

A Physical Condition May Affect BAC Readings

Your defense attorney may decide to have a medical test run to determine if there is a condition that causes your body to process alcohol differently or if your body naturally has a certain BAC level because of a physical disorder. This defense can help you if you tested over the legal limit, but did not consume alcohol.

The rising blood alcohol defense could also be used for your case. The law regarding how much alcohol you can have in your system is based on when you were driving. If you had a drink before getting behind the wheel, the alcohol doesn’t have enough time to enter your bloodstream and affect your driving. However, if the officer waits for a couple of hours before administering a breath test, your BAC may be elevated. An attorney may use retrograde extrapolation to estimate your blood alcohol content when you were driving.

Breath Test Devices Must Be Calibrated

Your attorney may also review the breathalyzer’s maintenance and calibration logs to determine if it was in proper working order. The breath machine’s meter is very sensitive and must be calibrated periodically according to the manufacturer’s guidelines. If it was not calibrated correctly, or the calibration certification has expired, your case may be dismissed.

Fight Your DWI Charge

If you are trying to help a friend or family member get released from the Harris County Jail, please contact our law office right away. We are experienced DWI defense attorneys who defend clients against serious DWI charges. We will immediately step in to ensure that your loved one’s rights are upheld during this time. Fluent in both English and Spanish, our firm is open 24/7.

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