Many people know that it’s a crime to drive a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, but few realize it’s also an offense to operate a boat while intoxicated. A conviction can lead to severe penalties and impact your future in many ways. However, when facing a boating while intoxicated (BWI) charge, you do not have to navigate the legal process alone.
A Mesquite boating while intoxicated lawyer can address your concerns and fight the allegations against you. Their goal is to have the charges against you either reduced or dismissed. To get started with a free case review, call the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg at (214) 696-9253.
The Penalties of Boating While Intoxicated
Texas views instances of driving while intoxicated and boating while intoxicated very similarly. Both are a crime and could result in jail time, fines, and license suspension. According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level is .08% or higher, you are considered legally intoxicated. In that situation, you could be charged with a Class B misdemeanor.
The penalties include:
- A fine not exceeding $2,000
- Three to 180 days in jail
- The loss of your license for up to a year
However, if your BAC level was higher than .15%, then the charges against you could escalate to a Class A misdemeanor, which comes with its own set of penalties. At the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, we understand the course that BWI cases take. We can conduct an investigation into the charges against you and, from there, determine a course of action that could benefit your case.
The defense strategy we employ on your behalf could result in:
- An acquittal
- A reduction of the charges against you
- A reduction of the penalties you are facing
- The dismissal of the charges against you
We want to get started helping you as soon as we can. To begin a free, no-obligation case review, we encourage you to reach out to our team today.
Law Enforcement Does Not Tolerate Drinking and Boating
In Texas, a police officer can pull you over in a vehicle if they suspect that you are driving under the influence. They need to establish probable cause based on your actions and behaviors in order to support their reason for pulling you over.
However, when it comes to Texas’ waterways, different rules apply. For example, a law enforcement officer can stop you to check whether you are adhering to maritime safety regulations. From there, if they find that you are drinking and boating, they can begin a BWI investigation that could result in charges against you.
They Can Collect Evidence of Boating While Intoxicated
While you can refuse to take a blood or breath test, this can be used against you and result in the suspension of your license, even if you were not legally intoxicated when you were pulled over. The prosecution’s goal in your case is to use the recovered evidence to establish that you were committing a crime. Your defense’s goal is to prove that the evidence in your case does not support the allegations against you.
Some of the ways that your Mesquite boating while intoxicated lawyer can dispute the evidence against you includes:
- Improper administration. Your legal team may be able to argue that the arresting officer did not properly conduct the breath or blood test correctly, yielding inaccurate results.
- Violation of rights. If the arresting officer used excessive force when collecting evidence, your lawyer can argue that your rights were violated, and the evidence should be thrown out.
- Sobriety. You may not have been legally intoxicated at the time of your arrest. If so, this evidence can be used as part of your defense strategy.
When you call the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, they can explain in more detail how certain forms of evidence in your case can be contested. To get started, call (214) 696-9253.
Possible Defenses for a BWI Charge
Ultimately, the legal strategy your lawyer employs will rest upon the details and needs of your situation. For example, if the evidence against you is valid and correctly collected, your Mesquite boating while intoxicated lawyer will likely not dispute this. However, that does not mean that you have no options.
Your lawyer may argue that:
- This is your first offense, and that you should be let go with a warning.
- You were unaware of the laws surrounding boating while intoxicated and did not know that you were committing a crime.
- You have enrolled in substance abuse courses and are trying to better yourself as a person.
- Your offense did not result in property damage or injuries, so the charges against you should be reduced.
At the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, we understand that every case is different. We may be able to provide a defense to your case in forms that we have not listed here.
Begin a Free Case Review Now
When facing a BWI charge, it’s important to acknowledge the severity of your situation. The Texas Penal Code has a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to drinking and operating a motor vehicle, whether that be a car or a boat. If you are convicted of a BWI, your criminal record can never be sealed. This means that for the rest of your life, this charge could come up on background checks when applying for jobs or new places to live. For that reason alone, consider working with a Mesquite boating while intoxicated lawyer.
To begin a free case review, call the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at (214) 696-9253.