Do Officer Video Tape During DWI Stop?

Most likely you were being videotaped during most of your encounter.

Most police cars are equipped with a dash camera and were running prior to the officer turning on his lights and pulling you over. Some of the larger police agencies are starting to use body worn cameras in addition to their dash cameras. There is often a back seat camera when the officer is transporting you from the scene, to the jail or hospital. At the police station most of the rooms and holding cells are being recorded. Therefore, any more field sobriety tests done at the station, any breath test, or any blood draw is being recorded.

What is a No Refusal Weekend?

On certain holidays or during special events, a city or county can say it is “no refusal” weekend.

That does not mean you HAVE to consent to a breath or a blood test. It merely means if you choose NOT to consent, there will be a judge or magistrate available to give the officer a warrant to take your blood.

Many people ask if that means they should just consent since the officer will be able to get their blood anyway. Click here for a detailed answer outlining that question.

Do I Have To Accept The State’s Plea Offer?

No, you do not have to accept the state’s plea offer, which is typically a permanent conviction. You always have the right to go to trial.

Most of the time if a DWI is not dismissed, my advice IS to go to trial.

Cannon Law always communicates the offers made by the state and the benefits and risks of going to trial. It is important to go through your case with your attorney so you are able to see the best and worst facts and evidence that would be presented in trial. Cannon Law will take you step by step through your case so you feel informed about all of your options.

What Happens If Police Officer Doesn’t Read Miranda Rights?

An officer has to read you your Miranda Rights once you are under arrest and before any “custodial interrogation.”

Failure to do so will not necessarily get your case dismissed.

If the officer places you under arrest and does not read your Miranda Rights to you, he can not ask you any more questions. If the officer did ask you questions without reading you your proper rights, your answers might not be admissible against you at trial. It depends on what questions the officer asked you.

This would not include questions verifying your identity (name, date of birth, address, etc.), or any breath or blood test results. The officer reads a separate set of statutory warnings to you before asking for your consent or refusal for a breath or blood test.

In summary, if the officer does not read you your Miranda Rights, your case will not automatically be dismissed, but potentially admissions or confessions might be thrown out of evidence.

What Should I Say When Pulled Over For a DWI?

You will be required to provide your license and registration. You are not obligated to provide any details about your day. Ex: Where you are coming from, where you are going, what you have had to drink, how much you have had to drink, when you consumed that alcohol, what your last meal was, how often you drink, etc.

Often times the officer already smells the alcohol on your breath, and is only looking to build his case against you.

Most importantly, always be polite and courteous when you are pulled over, even if the officer isn’t being friendly toward you. If the officer asks you to step out of your car, you should comply.

You do not have to perform any standard field sobriety tests (Which you can read about in more detail here). You do not have to take any breath test at the scene or back at the station. You do not need to consent to a blood test. If the officer gets a warrant to take your blood, at this time, you can express that you do not consent to the blood sample being taken, but comply and allow the nurse/ phlebotomist to draw your blood.

Often times people feel they have to consent to road side tests, breath tests, or blood tests or else they will get into more trouble. That is not necessarily the case. How you refuse the officer’s tests and questioning can make all the difference. It is okay for you to politely tell the officer you do not feel comfortable with any balancing tests, you would prefer the officer get a warrant before drawing your blood, and you would like to speak to your attorney before answering any questions. The scenario would likely play out much differently if you have an attitude with the officer, try to leave the scene, or physically resist the officer when he is trying to place you under arrest.

Be polite, but know your rights!

Can a DWI Affect Ability To Travel?

Yes, it can affect your ability to travel while you are on bond and your case is pending, while on probation, and sometimes even after you served your sentence.

Some courts will set travel restrictions while your case is pending or while on probation. However, if your attorney knows about upcoming travel dates, they can often get permission from the judge for you to travel.

Also, a DWI conviction (even a misdemeanor), can affect your ability to travel internationally. This is commonly a problem for those wishing to travel to Canada.

Allow Cannon Law to help you with any travel issues you may be facing because of your DWI conviction.

What is the Cost of a DWI in Texas?

DWI 1st Offense– Class B Misdemeanor

  • Up to a $2,000 fine.
  • 3 – 180 days in jail (This time is usually served through probation)
  • License suspension for up to 2 years.
  • Annual surcharge up to $2,000 for 3 years to keep your license.

DWI 1st Offense with a BAC at or above a .15 – Class A Misdemeanor

  • Up to a $4,000 fine.
  • 3 Days – 1 Year in Jail (This time is usually served through probation)
  • License suspension for up to 2 years.
  • Annual surcharge up to $2,000 for 3 years to keep your license.

DWI Second Offense– Class A Misdemeanor

  • Up to a $4,000 fine.
  • 30 days – 1 year in jail (Majority of jail time is usually probated)
  • Requires at least 3-5 days in jail depending upon when the prior DWI took place
  • License suspension for up to 2 years.
  • Annual surcharge up to $2,000 for 3 years to keep your license.

DWI Third Offense-

  • Up to a $10,000 fine.
  • State prison time between 2 years and 10 years.
  • License suspension from 6 months – 2 years.
  • Annual surcharge up to $2,000 for 3 years to keep your license.

DWI with a Child Passenger Under 15-

  • Up to a $10,000 fine.
  • Jail time up to 2 years.
  • License suspension for 180 days.

What Is The Best Outcome For A DWI Case?

The best outcome for any DWI is a dismissal. A dismissal is always Cannon Law’s primary goal for any case. If there is no dismissal in a case, then going to trial and the jury finding you Not Guilty is the next best outcome. Both a dismissal and a not guilty verdict will allow you to expunge the case from your record. Once your case is expunged, you can legally deny it ever happened.