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How many drinks do I have to drink to be intoxicated under the law?
The legal limit for intoxication in Texas is .08, but how many beers or shots it takes for a person to get to .08 depends on numerous factors like age, weight, sex, and what you had to eat that day. For many people, drinking just two drinks in one hour will put them over the limit. Just one drink an hour after that can keep you there.
How do the police decide if a person is intoxicated?
Police officers use a variety of tricky techniques to evaluate a person. Some officers arrest on smell alone, while most will rely upon Standardized Field Sobriety Tests. These tests are complicated and are scored on criteria that the officer doesn't tell you about. If you choose to do these tests, make sure you listen very closely to the instructions and don't be afraid to ask questions.
If I am accused of DWI, do I have to take a blood or breath test?
No, however choosing not to give a breath or blood sample can result in a suspension of your driver's license. Luckily, I can fight that suspension later. The officers sometimes attempt to get a warrant to take your blood if you refuse, but I can fight that warrant later as well. Make sure you take note of anything the officer says to try and get you to agree to a breath or blood test, as that can be used in your defense later.
If I am stopped for DWI, can a police officer ask me questions without reading me my rights?
Before placing a person under arrest, the officer is allowed to ask questions without reading you your rights. However, you are under NO obligation to talk to them. Generally, I recommend that you be as polite as possible, and saying something like "police officers make me nervous, am I free to leave?" is a good way to get out of a conversation with an officer. Remember you always have the right to remain silent.
I was charged with DWI; should I get a lawyer?
Absolutely! DWI cases are quite complicated and have very serious consequences. You need someone to help you through the experience and explain what your options are. While I want your business, you need a lawyer even if you choose not to go with me. If you would like to schedule an appointment to discuss your options, please call me.