Given the fact that Texas has one of the strictest set of laws on DWIs in the country, it is not uncommon to hear about lengthy and tough sentences for DWI convictions. A man out of Liberty County recently received a sentence that is shocking in every sense of the word. For his role in a DWI, accident, and deaths and injuries to a number of people, he received six life sentences.
Of course, this was not a typical DWI case in which the most a person faces is some jail time, a fine, and other consequences. Because of the number of people involved, criminal history, and other factors, this case was unique. Despite a solid and lengthy defense, the man ended up convicted and now will spend the rest of his life in jail, pending the results of an appeal.
This case was a tragedy. It began on May 15 when two cars collided on a state road, both going at high rates of speed and headed directly for each other. There were several passengers at the time of the accident, two of them died as a result of the crash, and others were wounded terribly and will live with life altering injuries.
After the dust settled from the accident and legal proceedings began, the driver involved was charged with a number of crimes, including those he was found guilty on:
In his defense, his legal team challenged the evidence put forward by the prosecution. They argued, among other things that the vials used to trap his blood were contaminated, and therefore caused the alcohol to ferment at a quicker rate and skew the results. Additionally, they argued that pain medication administered on site caused the results to be wrongly reported.
These defenses, though well thought out and put forward admirably, did not carry the day. After the trial was concluded, the case went on to the sentencing phase, a different aspect to a DWI conviction.
As a general rule, during a trial the jury is only allowed to hear evidence of what happened involving the actual crime. But once a jury hands down a conviction, they are then free to hear about past crimes and behaviors to determine what kind of sentence will be handed down, and that is what happened here. Because of the man’s extensive criminal background, he was given an even harsher sentence than he otherwise would have.
This case should remind us all to drive safely, but also that any DWI charge is serious and should be defended as aggressively as possible. If you are charged with DWI, contact our legal team today. At The Wilder DWI Defense Firm we will investigate the facts, apply the law, and give you your best chance to win a case.