Intoxication manslaughter is a serious offense in Texas. Being convicted of intoxication manslaughter comes with heavy consequences and having an experienced criminal defense attorney on your team can make a world of a difference. Below is an overview of intoxication manslaughter, what the consequences are, and the steps you should take immediately after you are charged.
What is Intoxication Manslaughter?
A person commits intoxication manslaughter in Texas when the person “operates a motor vehicle in a public place, operates an aircraft, [or] a watercraft … and is intoxicated and by the reason of that intoxication causes the death of another by accident or mistake.” Texas Penal Code § 49.08. In simple terms, intoxication manslaughter occurs when a person is committing the crime of DWI and that intoxication causes the death of another person by accident or by mistake. The person can be in the same car as you or in another car involved in the accident. What could be a regular DWI can take a serious turn if you are involved in an accident. If the other people involved in the accident are injured, and later in the hospital, they pass away, your DWI charge will quickly be enhanced to an intoxication manslaughter charge. This is a second-degree felony, which comes with a punishment range between 2 and 20 years in prison.
The Consequences of Intoxication Manslaughter in Texas?
The consequences of intoxication manslaughter are serious. Intoxication manslaughter is a second-degree felony. The punishment range on a second-degree felony is anywhere between 2 and 20 years in prison and a fine up $10,000. If you are convicted of intoxication manslaughter, as mentioned, it is a felony. Being a felon comes with more consequences. It impacts your ability to vote and to own a gun. It may prevent you from being hired for certain jobs or it may cost you your job. The consequences of intoxication manslaughter last throughout your life and will be a permanent mark on your criminal record. extremely important to know how serious the consequences of an intoxication manslaughter charge are in Texas and what exactly you are facing.
Contact an Intoxication Manslaughter DWI Attorney in Texas Immediately After Charged
Contacting an experienced DWI attorney if you are charged with intoxication manslaughter is imperative. The best and first decision you should make is hiring an experienced attorney. They may want to hire an accident investigator to perform their own investigation of what caused the accident. An experienced attorney will also be able to protect your rights and fight for the best outcome for you. Whether that is working out a plea deal or fighting in trial, an experienced DWI attorney will be able to handle it all. You will need to hire a lawyer immediately after you are charged. This will ensure that your rights are protected every step of the way and that you have someone on your team from day one. Many judges will order bond conditions that may include no driving and an alcohol monitoring device. You need an attorney that understands accident reconstruction, blood alcohol analysis, hospital records, and all the other evidence that is gathered in an intoxication manslaughter case.
The best decision for yourself if you are charged with intoxication manslaughter in Texas is to hire a DWI attorney immediately.