People face driving while intoxicated (DWI) charges in Texas for several reasons. There are a handful of different circumstances that can potentially lead to a DWI arrest and then charges and finally criminal court.
When you understand exactly when and why the police can arrest you for drunk driving, you’ll be in a better position to advocate for yourself during a traffic stop or when planning a response to pending charges. When can police officers arrest you for drunk driving in Texas?
After you cause a crash
If police officers arrive at the scene of a motor vehicle collision and believe that one of the drivers was under the influence when the wreck occurred, they will likely request chemical testing and possibly arrest that driver.
DWI charges can turn into more serious offenses with bigger penalties if someone causes significant bodily injury or a fatality.
When you display impaired skill
Officers will have you perform a field sobriety test and a chemical breath test when they suspect you of impairment, but they can sometimes arrest you even without gathering chemical evidence first. Officers need to have a justification to pull you over, and swerving or erratic braking could give them cause to suspect impairment.
If you displayed obviously impaired driving and admitted to consuming alcohol, the officer who pulled you over can arrest you based on your driving performance, regardless of your actual blood alcohol concentration (BAC).
When you violate the state limit for your BAC
The inverse scenario can also lead to an arrest. If there were no issues with your driving skill but a chemical test shows up that your BAC is over the legal limit set based on your age and license type, then the officer can arrest you for DWI. Essentially, even if the alcohol you consume does not affect your driving skill, you can face charges because you were over the legal limit.
The situation leading to your arrest will influence which strategy for defense will be fast in your situation. Thinking about your options for your defense against DWI charges can help you protect your reputation, driver’s license and career.