Consequences of Driving Drunk with a Child Passenger in Texas

Child safety should be the most important consideration when driving a car with a child passenger.  This is the case regardless of whether the driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or is completely sober.  A child should be placed in a car seat properly (if the child is of a very young age), a child should always be wearing a seatbelt, and the driver should be following Texas driving laws at all times.  Therefore, when a driver chooses to drink and drive or take drugs when a child passenger is present, all consideration for child safety is gone.

Under Texas law, anyone convicted of a DWI with a child passenger younger than fifteen years of age faces a fine of up to $10,000, jail time of up to two years in a state penitentiary, and the loss of a driver’s license for 180 days.  These are serious consequences that can leave any convicted individual’s life in shambles.  Further, the regret of knowing a child’s life was put in danger is a form of punishment in itself.  Despite these strict measures under Texas law, it is important to understand that all people make mistakes.  The law applies equally regardless if you are an upstanding citizen who happened to have a few beers before picking up your child from a sporting event, or if you have a blemished criminal record.

Further, if a child is injured or killed as a result of a drunk driving accident, hefty jail time should be expected.  Even having one sip of alcohol and driving with a child passenger under fifteen years of age is too much of a risk to take.  You should assume that you could be pulled over at any time for any particular reason, as police often find ways to pull individuals over for very minor violations (such as not signaling when turning left or right, or not coming to a complete stop at a stop sign, among others).

How a DWI Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help You

If you seek the advice of an experienced attorney as soon as possible after being charged with a DWI accompanied by traveling with a child passenger, you may be able to minimize the punishment imposed on you.  It is key to remember that the punishment terms listed above are maximum punishments for the crime, so just because you committed the crime does not mean you will be subject to the maximum penalties.

Depending on whether or not you have a criminal record, your attorney may be able to negotiate a plea deal with the prosecutor to ensure the charge does not haunt you for years to come.  If you plead guilty to the charge at hand without the assistance of an attorney, you are leaving the decision up to the judge, and oftentimes a judge’s decision is much stricter than a prosecutor would have agreed to.  Therefore, it is essential that you do whatever you can to get your DWI matter taken care of with an experienced attorney by your side.

 Contact Our Office Today to Meet With Jack Pettit To Discuss Your DWI Charge

If you have been charged with driving under the influence while having a child in your car, it is imperative that you speak with a highly experienced Dallas DUI/DWI defense attorney as soon as possible.  Attorney Jack Pettit has devoted a large percentage of his practice to handling all types of DUI and DWI charges, and has the knowledge and skill necessary to handle your case. All drinking-related charges in Texas are very serious, but when a child is involved, the consequences can be even more severe.  To learn more about your legal options, contact Attorney Jack Pettit by calling 214-521-4567.  Mr. Pettit conveniently provides services in both English and Spanish.  His office also accepts major credit cards.

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