DWI Court Process
The DWI court process can be confusing. Here’s what happens:
The court process is set in motion once you’re arrested. Once you’ve been stopped, the police will attempt field sobriety and breathalyzer tests. Remember that you are well within your rights to not say anything without an attorney with you. Most likely, you’ll be taken into custody (the “drunk tank”) and be allowed to post bail.
Your first court appearance will be your arraignment, and you’ll want to have a Houston DWI lawyer with you. The court will tell you what charges are being brought against you, let you know what your rights are, and let you plea guilty or not guilty.
The Court Date and Discovery Process
If you don’t plead guilty, the government will begin building a case against you during what’s known as the discovery process. They’ll examine your field sobriety, breathalyzer, and blood test results, review police reports, and interview the arresting officers. Your Houston DWI lawyer will request all of these documents as well, along with documents that may help your case, like medical records, to build your defense. You’ll have several court dates as well, and while nerve-wracking, it can actually be beneficial to have more court dates.
The Plea Bargain or Trial
Depending on what turns up during discovery, you will either plea bargain out your case, meaning you’ll accept a penalty in exchange for a lesser charge, or you’ll go to trial in front of a jury. After examining and hearing evidence from both sides, the jury will return a guilty or not guilty verdict, with the judge to decide the penalty.
How a Houston DWI Lawyer Can Help
The court process is difficult to navigate without help, and a misstep can cost you thousands of dollars, your driver’s license, and your freedom. Call a Houston DWI lawyer immediately to explore your options and start building your defense. You’ll want a lawyer with a solid track record of getting not guilty verdicts and dismissed and reduced charges for his clients, as well as experience. Attorney Jonathan J. Paull has 14 years of experience dealing with courts, police officers, and DWI defense.
If you’ve been arrested for a DWI, call (713) 227-1525 today. Don’t wait to build your defense.