DWI Charges in Texas – When Lending Your Car to Others Can Be Risky

It’s not always easy to say no to a friend, family member, co-worker, or other acquaintance who has asked to borrow your car, especially when that person is literally begging you, or trying to convince you it’s an emergency.  While most of the time, cars are borrowed without consequence, there are times when the individual who has borrowed the car has been drinking, and subsequently is pulled over and charged with Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) in Texas.  If this happens, and you are completely unaware that the individual was under the influence, you likely will not face criminal charges.  However, you should be aware that you could potentially be charged with aiding and abetting if there is any evidence to show you may have known about the individual’s intoxication, and/or knowingly allowed that person to drive your car.

In Texas, aiding and abetting is a general crime, and the consequences and range of punishment of a conviction entirely depend upon the underlying crime.  With a DWI, if you knew or had reason to know that another person driving your car was under the influence, you face consequences that could result in a conviction on your criminal record, causing problems for you in the future.  However, if you consult with a Dallas DWI Defense Attorney right away, your attorney may be able to get any criminal charges against you dismissed or lowered to less serious charges.

It is important to understand that the police must have clear facts to show you aided and abetted another person who operated your vehicle while under the influence.  In most cases, the owner of the vehicle is unaware that the individual operating the vehicle has done so under the influence.  But, you should be prepared in the event the police speak with you about what happened.  Even if you had nothing to do with the individual driving your car under the influence, your nerves and anxiety of speaking with police officers may cause you to say something you did not intend.  As such, you should speak with an attorney prior to talking with police, even if you have not been convicted of any crime.

You should also be aware that you may be held civilly liable for the driver’s negligence if any property has been damaged or destroyed, and/or any person has been injured as a result of the individual’s conduct in allegedly driving under the influence.  Because there is a potential that you may have to speak with the police and/or may be charged with aiding and abetting, it is essential that you seek the opinion of a Dallas DWI Defense Attorney as soon as possible.

Contact Dallas DWI Defense Attorney Jack Pettit Today

Criminal charges can be unsuspecting, and oftentimes accused individuals are shocked when they are charged with a crime they were not actually involved in.  Whether you have been charged with a DWI, or you have been charged with aiding and abetting, you should consult with a seasoned Dallas County DWI Defense Attorney right away.  The sooner you speak with an attorney, the sooner your attorney can evaluate the facts of your case and either seek dismissal of the charge, or negotiate to have the charge lowered to a less serious crime.  Dallas DWI Defense Attorney Jack Pettit is a former prosecutor, and has more than thirty years of experience working in the criminal justice system.  Mr. Pettit devotes his practice to defending the constitutional rights of his clients and seeking the best resolution possible for each client’s unique circumstances.  To schedule an initial consultation with Jack Pettit, contact our office today by calling (214) 521-4567.  Our office conveniently provides bilingual legal services in both English and Spanish, and we also accept major credit cards.


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