A charge of driving while intoxicated (DWI) carries different consequences in different states across the United States. In Texas, your third DWI conviction is considered a third-degree felony, not your first or second. Some other special circumstances can enhance that felony charge or turn your first or second offense into a felony.

Third Conviction

As we mentioned above, the third DWI you are convicted of in the state of Texas is considered a third-degree felony. The punishment usually ranges from 2-10 years in a state prison. You could be fined up to $10,000 and your license could be suspended for up to two years.

3+ Convictions with 1 Prior Stay in TDCJ Penitentiary

If this is your third DWI conviction and you’ve previously done time in a penitentiary under the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, you have the same risks in jail time and fines as with a third conviction, but it is a second-degree felony. With TWO prior stays, you’d potentially face 25 years to life in prison, but remember your DWI lawyers and defense team play a big part in helping to cut down any sentence you receive after conviction.

Intoxication Manslaughter

In the tragic instance that a DWI has caused a fatality, it would be charged as a second-degree felony punishable by 2-10 years in prison and up to $10,000 dollars in fines. Manslaughter cases can be especially emotionally taxing, but criminal defense attorneys do their best to argue the lack of intent via intoxication, making it different than a murder charge.

DWI With A Child Passenger Under 15 Years Of Age

Lawyers see instances of this charge with guardians illegally driving children intoxicated AND young teenagers being driven by intoxicated friends. This is a state jail felony, punishable by six months to two years in a state jail facility and up to two years of license suspension.

Felons in Texas regain their right to vote after being released from prison, but they may not hold public office or serve on a jury. A convicted felon in TX also is barred from their gun rights for five years after the end of their incarceration, probation, and parole. After those five years, you can restore your gun rights, but only to carry within your own home. Of course, you’re better off avoiding these convictions, but if any of these charges are ever against you, you should know the worst case scenario.

If you’re in need of help, don’t leave it up to chance. Call a DWI attorney at the Law Firm of Patrick Short.