Plano Third-Offense DWI Penalty Enhancements

When a defendant is facing their third DWI charge, there are a number of penalty enhancements. Previous periods of incarceration, the presence of minors in the vehicle at the time of the offense, and an elevated blood alcohol content could all affect a convicted defendant’s sentence. If you are facing charges, it is important that you consult with an attorney who has an understanding of Plano third-offense DWI penalty enhancements.

A Criminal Record’s Impact on Penalties

A previous jail sentence for a DWI will likely lead to a penalty enhancement for any subsequent DWI convictions, particularly for a third offense. The penalty for a third DWI after having already been incarcerated once may range from two to ten years.

In the case of a fourth, fifth, or sixth DWI offense, if the defendant has one prior trip to the penitentiary from a DWI conviction, the range of punishment can go from two to twenty years in the penitentiary. If the defendant has two prior periods of incarceration, the range of punishment could enhance up to 25 years to life in the penitentiary.

Presence of Minors in the Vehicle

If a person is charged with a first or second DWI and someone under the age of 15 is in a vehicle, the person’s charge will be enhanced from a misdemeanor to a State Jail Felony.

If a defendant has two prior DWIs, and they have a child under the age of 15 in the car, they face two ten years pf incarceration. Having a young child in the car could be considered an aggravating factor on how the prosecutor prosecutes the case.

Elevated Blood Alcohol Content

Evidence of an elevated blood alcohol content does not determine penalty enhancements for a felony offense, but it does for a misdemeanor. If it is a defendant’s first DWI, and they had a BAC of 0.15 or higher, the range of punishment extends from a Class B misdemeanor with up to 180 days in jail to a Class A misdemeanor with up to a year in jail.

If the charge is a defendant’s second DWI offense, their alcohol concentration does not matter.  Whether above or below a 0.15, they will be charged with a Class A misdemeanor and there will be a requirement that they install the Ignigtion Interlock into their car.   It if is a defendant’s third or subsequent DWI offense, it does not matter what their alcohol concentration is. They will be charged with a third-degree felony with a range of punishment of two to ten years incarceration.

An Attorney Could Help Mitigate Penalty Enhancements

If you are facing potential penalty enhancements after being charged with a third DWI, an experienced attorney may be able to help. A lawyer could negotiate with prosecutors to drop certain charges or mitigate certain penalty enhancements to better preserve your future.

Plano third-offense DWI penalty enhancements could dramatically worsen an already difficult situation. Do not attempt to defend a case on your own. Contact a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney today.

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