What Is Aggravated DWI and How Does It Differ From a Normal DWI?

Home » What Is Aggravated DWI and How Does It Differ From a Normal DWI?

Did you know that in Texas, 870 DWI drivers were involved in fatal crashes last year?

With the number Of DWI cases becoming more frequent, Texas laws are beginning to crack down on driving while intoxicated. If you’ve recently been charged with aggravated DWI, you may be wondering what the difference between this charge and a normal DWI is.

So, what is an aggravated DWI? 

If you’re currently facing aggravated DWI charges in Texas, you should have a better understanding of what the difference between a DWI and an aggravated DWI is. Keep reading to learn more! 

What Is an Aggravated DWI?

 An aggravated DWI in Texas states that there were additional circumstances that existed in addition to the standard DWI charge. A DWI charge in Texas will be given to you if you are operating a motor vehicle on a public road while mentally incapacitated or physically impaired due to the impact of a controlled substance or alcohol.

For a DWI conviction to be made by the prosecution, your BAC has to be 0.08% or higher.

 However, for an aggravated DWI charge in Texas, these common factors have to have taken place for you to receive the aggravated charge:

  • Prior DWI conviction
  • Causing an accident while you were intoxicated and driving, that resulted in a serious injury or death
  • BAC of 0.15% or more
  • Open container in the vehicle
  • A child was found in the car while you were operating the vehicle and intoxicated

If you met one or move of these above-listed special circumstances, a normal DWI charge would be moved to an aggravated DWI charge. 

What Are the Penalties for an Aggravated DWI in the State of Texas?

If this is your first DWI in Texas, you will be charged with a Class B misdemeanor. A conviction for a Class B misdemeanor will be in prison for up to 180 days. You will also be charged a $2,000 fine and have your driver’s license suspended for one year.

However, if this isn’t your first aggravated DWI charge, the penalties will be a lot more severe, depending on what factor determine your charge to be considered aggravated.

If your BAC was 0.15% or higher at the time of your charge, you will be filed a Class A misdemeanor. You also receive a Class A misdemeanor if you have received a second DWI charge. A Class A misdemeanor well have you spend one year in jail and receive a fine up to $4,000.

On the other hand, if you have two prior DWI convictions, you’ll be charged with a felony. If you were the cause of a drunk driving accident that resulted in serious injury, you will face a 3rd-degree felony charge. This will carry ten years of prison time and a $10,000 fine.

If you are the cause of a drunk driving accident that resulted in an individual’s death, you’ll be charged with a second-degree felony. You will have to spend 20 years in prison and pay $10,000 in fines.

Finding Legal Help for Aggravated DWI Charge

 So, what is an aggravated DWI charge? It’s like a DWI charge, however, there have to be special circumstances that happen for Texas law to charge you with an aggravated DWI.

 Are you looking for legal help with your DWI charge? Contact us today to learn more about us.