What happens after a DWI in San Antonio & South Texas
Barton|Hagee Law Firm, PLLC
What can a San Antonio DWI Lawyer at Barton Law, PLLC do to help?
It is easy to become discouraged when facing a DWI in San Antonio or South Texas. There is a lot involved, and you have valid fears. But keep in mind, there are always options to consider and various ways to reduce or eliminate the negative impact on you. Your first step should be to contact a veteran San Antonio DWI Attorney at Barton|Hagee Law Firm, PLLC who will scrutinize every detail and explore any option that benefits your situation.
With an impressive history of successfully representing clients in various DWI cases throughout San Antonio and Bexar County, we know what officers look for, how prosecutors build cases, and what it takes to obtain the best possible results. We’ll begin by evaluating your situation and identifying any flaws in the evidence. Our DWI Defense Lawyers are well-versed in the training and testing methods officers use in San Antonio. This includes recognizing the fault associated with Drug Recognition Evaluators (DRE), where officers are trained to recognize physical signs of impairment in drugged driving, particularly in prescription or narcotics cases.
We will also review any BAC test results to dispute their accuracy, the officers’ conduct at the scene to pinpoint their mistakes, the validity of the plan put in place during any checkpoint to determine its constitutionality, and any physical limitations that may have affected your field sobriety test performance. From there, we will craft and execute a defense strategy that gives you the best chance at success, while simultaneously protecting your driver’s license.
At Barton Law, PLLC, our San Antonio DWI Defense Lawyers know this is a confusing time, and you’ll have a lot of questions. We want you to have as much information as possible when defending against a DWI in San Antonio. That’s why we encourage you to review some of the most frequently asked DWI questions that we’ve put together for your convenience.
Common questions after a DWI arrest
Do you have questions after being charged with a DWI in San Antonio or South Texas? If your first contact with law enforcement recently occurred during a traffic stop that turned into an arrest for DWI, you probably have questions. We frequently work with clients who are in a similar situation. In an effort to answer some of the questions you may have about your DWI charge in San Antonio or South Texas, we have put together the most common questions our clients usually ask:
QUESTION: The police officer didn’t read my rights before arresting me, does this mean my case will get dismissed?
ANSWER: MAYBE, but unfortunately, the TV show “Cops” has given everyone the false impression that any time you are arrested, you will be read your Miranda Rights. According to long-standing case law, your Miranda Rights are required to be read PRIOR to a custodial interrogation. Therefore, you must actually be in custody or exposed to circumstances where a reasonable person would not feel free to terminate the encounter with police AND the police must be questioning or interrogating you. Even if the police fail to read you your rights when required, this does not mean your case will be dismissed, but rather your statements may be suppressed, along with any evidence gathered based on those statements, as the evidence may be “fruit from the poisonous tree”. As with all cases, we will analyze your case to determine if there are appropriate grounds to move for a dismissal of your charges or suppression of your statements.
QUESTION: I think I did great on the Field Sobriety Tests, does this mean you will be able to wine my case?
ANSWER: VERY POSSIBLE. I like to break DWI cases into three phases that allow for challenge. The first phase is a reasonable suspicion to stop you. The second is probable cause to arrest. The third is the state’s ability to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Throughout these three phases, police officers are observing a number of factors that the suspect is unaware of. While the field sobriety tests are one of those factors, most people have no idea what is actually being observed by the officer during the various tests administered. While performing well on the tests may help in challenging the officer’s decision to arrest (probable cause) or guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, it is not the end all, be all. Once we have a better idea of the evidence gathered against you (i.e. officer notes, video, witness statements, etc.), we are in a better position to explain the potential for weaknesses in the case against, should they exist.
QUESTION: I feel like I’m guilty, should I even bother hiring a lawyer for my DWI?
ANSWER: YES! I understand that this may seem self-serving, but I always advise anyone facing criminal charges to hire an attorney. Specifically, with DWI charges, the immediate and long-term consequences of pleading guilty, without a thorough review of your case, go far beyond having a criminal record. DWIs are very technical cases and are not as cut and dry as they seem to the layperson. While you may feel like the state has a great case against you, this may not be true after reviewing the evidence and actions by police in their investigation.
If after review of the evidence you have no defense, I still advise having a lawyer on your behalf because an experienced San Antonio DWI Lawyer can likely negotiate a GREAT RESOLUTION and very often keep a conviction off your permanent record.
QUESTION: It is my first offense, will they reduce my DWI to Reckless Driving or Obstruction?
ANSWER: Even if it is your first offense DWI, the short answer is not likely. UNLESS you hire a seasoned San Antonio DWI Lawyer like those at Barton Law, PLLC.
QUESTION: Will I go back to jail?
ANSWER: With the help of an Experienced San Antonio DWI Lawyer at Barton Law, PLLC, your opportunity to stay out of jail are greatly increased. We will do everything in our power to keep you out of jail, in most cases we accomplish this goal without breaking a sweat.
QUESTION: How do I know if there is video of my arrest and can I get a copy?
ANSWER: One of the first things we do after being hired is to make a request to the appropriate arresting agency for a copy of any and all video footage of your arrest. Depending on the arresting agency, the video, if available, may be from a dash camera mounted in the patrol car or a body camera worn by the police officer.
It is important to make the request as soon as possible, because for certain agencies if the arrest is not appropriately flagged as a DWI, it is purged from their system after a certain number of days. If video exists in your case, once we receive a copy, we bring you into the office so we can view it together. Doing so allows me to explain the important points of the video, whether good or bad, and also allows you to see the evidence against you. Today, we are lucky to have so many police officers wearing body cameras, because it provides us with an objective account of what happened that led to your arrest. Also, the video can be helpful in impeaching the officer’s testimony in court, should the testimony not be consistent with what actually happened during your investigation and shown on video.
QUESTION: The police took my drivers license, can I drive?
ANSWER: Immediately following an arrest for DWI, you should have been provided paperwork explaining that you can drive for 40 days after the arrest date. IF YOU DID NOT RECEIVE THIS PAPERWORK, CALL OUR SAN ANTONIO CRIMINAL LAWYERS AT BARTON LAW, PLLC IMMEDIATELY. If you did receive this paperwork you still need to call ASAP, because WE CAN KEEP YOU DRIVING BEYOND THE 40 DAYS.
As your criminal defense lawyers, there are certain things we can do in order to likely keep you driving no matter what lies ahead regarding DPS and this DWI allegation
What happens after a DWI in San Antonio & South Texas
Barton|Hagee Law Firm, PLLC