New law allows removing a DWI from your record

New law allows removing a DWI from your record

The Governor of Texas has signed a new bill making some people convicted of DWI eligible for a petition for nondisclosure. In the past, a DWI could never be removed from your record, on September 1, 2017 this will change (and it applies to cases prior to September 1, 2017!). As expected, there are a lot of factors that will cause a person to be ineligible to have their records sealed.

The requirements are as follows:

  • Must be a first time offender
  • Breath and/or blood test must be below 0.15
  • DWI cannot involve an accident with another person (even if they are a passenger)

If you made it this far, now you probably want to know when you are eligible for the nondisclosure.

If you successfully completed community supervision (probation):

  • Second anniversary of the date of completion of probation, if you were required to have an ignition interlock for at least 6 months.
  • Fifth anniversary of the date of completion of probation, if you were not required to have an ignition interlock.

If you were sentenced to jail (or paid a fine and were given credit for the time you already served):

  • Third anniversary of the date of completion of the jail sentence (or when you paid the fine if you were given credit for time you already served) – if it was a condition of the sentence that you have an ignition interlock for at least six months. (NOTE: I have never heard of anyone being required to have an ignition interlock as a condition of a conviction on a DWI 1st offense. I am interested to see if this applies to a person who was convicted and subsequently got an occupational license and interlock.)
  • Fifth anniversary of the date of completion of the jail sentence if the court that imposed the sentence did not order an ignition interlock.

Those are the requirements, if you think you are eligible call Jay Cohen and lets get your DWI sealed!

 

Texas cybercrime bill headed to the Governor’s desk

A new bill headed to the Texas Governor’s desk criminalizes certain cybercrimes such as electronic access interference and electronic data tampering, which includes crimes such as ransomware or malware attacks and unlawful decryption.

Texas House Bill 9, referred to as the Texas Cybercrime Act, is the state’s version of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act “CFAA,” which creates punishment ranges based on the aggregate amount of money lost by a complainant, including property, service stolen, appropriated, or rendered unrecoverable by the offense, or an expenditure required to determine whether data was breached, or an attempt to recover that data. These expenses could add up quickly, making punishment ranges very severe.

Whether you’re accused of hacking from your parents basement or a coffee shop, you need an experienced criminal defense lawyer to fight these computer crime charges. Call Jay Cohen, and next time, use a better VPN.

The Act is slated to take effect September 1, 2017.

 

Full text of House Bill 9 – Texas Cybercrime Act

AN ACT
relating to cybercrime; creating criminal offenses.
       BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
       SECTION 1.  This Act may be cited as the Texas Cybercrime
Act.
       SECTION 2.  Section 33.01, Penal Code, is amended by
amending Subdivision (2) and adding Subdivisions (11-a), (13-a),
(13-b), (13-c), and (15-a) to read as follows:
             (2)  “Aggregate amount” means the amount of:
                   (A)  any direct or indirect loss incurred by a
victim, including the value of money, property, or service stolen,
appropriated, or rendered unrecoverable by the offense; or
                   (B)  any expenditure required by the victim to:
                         (i)  determine whether data or [verify that]
a computer, computer network, computer program, or computer system
was [not] altered, acquired, appropriated, damaged, deleted, or
disrupted by the offense; or
                         (ii)  attempt to restore, recover, or
replace any data altered, acquired, appropriated, damaged,
deleted, or disrupted.
             (11-a)  “Decryption,” “decrypt,” or “decrypted” means
the decoding of encrypted communications or information, whether by
use of a decryption key, by breaking an encryption formula or
algorithm, or by the interference with a person’s use of an
encryption service in a manner that causes information or
communications to be stored or transmitted without encryption.
             (13-a)  “Encrypted private information” means
encrypted data, documents, wire or electronic communications, or
other information stored on a computer or computer system, whether
in the possession of the owner or a provider of an electronic
communications service or a remote computing service, and which has
not been accessible to the public.
             (13-b)  “Encryption,” “encrypt,” or “encrypted” means
the encoding of data, documents, wire or electronic communications,
or other information, using mathematical formulas or algorithms in
order to preserve the confidentiality, integrity, or authenticity
of, and prevent unauthorized access to, such information.
             (13-c)  “Encryption service” means a computing
service, a computer device, computer software, or technology with
encryption capabilities, and includes any subsequent version of or
update to an encryption service.
             (15-a)  “Privileged information” means:
                   (A)  protected health information, as that term is
defined by Section 182.002, Health and Safety Code;
                   (B)  information that is subject to the
attorney-client privilege; or
                   (C)  information that is subject to the
accountant-client privilege under Section 901.457, Occupations
Code, or other law, if the information is on a computer, computer
network, or computer system owned by a person possessing a license
issued under Subchapter H, Chapter 901, Occupations Code.
       SECTION 3.  Chapter 33, Penal Code, is amended by adding
Sections 33.022, 33.023, and 33.024 to read as follows:
       Sec. 33.022.  ELECTRONIC ACCESS INTERFERENCE. (a) A
person, other than a network provider or online service provider
acting for a legitimate business purpose, commits an offense if the
person intentionally interrupts or suspends access to a computer
system or computer network without the effective consent of the
owner.
       (b)  An offense under this section is a third degree felony.
       (c)  It is a defense to prosecution under this section that
the person acted with the intent to facilitate a lawful seizure or
search of, or lawful access to, a computer, computer network, or
computer system for a legitimate law enforcement purpose.
       Sec. 33.023.  ELECTRONIC DATA TAMPERING. (a)  In this
section, “ransomware” means a computer contaminant or lock that
restricts access by an unauthorized person to a computer, computer
system, or computer network or any data in a computer, computer
system, or computer network under circumstances in which a person
demands money, property, or a service to remove the computer
contaminant or lock, restore access to the computer, computer
system, computer network, or data, or otherwise remediate the
impact of the computer contaminant or lock.
       (b)  A person commits an offense if the person intentionally
alters data as it transmits between two computers in a computer
network or computer system through deception and without a
legitimate business purpose.
       (c)  A person commits an offense if the person intentionally
introduces ransomware onto a computer, computer network, or
computer system through deception and without a legitimate business
purpose.
       (d)  Subject to Subsections (d-1) and (d-2), an offense under
this section is a Class C misdemeanor.
       (d-1)  Subject to Subsection (d-2), if it is shown on the
trial of the offense that the defendant acted with the intent to
defraud or harm another, an offense under this section is:
             (1)  a Class C misdemeanor if the aggregate amount
involved is less than $100 or cannot be determined;
             (2)  a Class B misdemeanor if the aggregate amount
involved is $100 or more but less than $750;
             (3)  a Class A misdemeanor if the aggregate amount
involved is $750 or more but less than $2,500;
             (4)  a state jail felony if the aggregate amount
involved is $2,500 or more but less than $30,000;
             (5)  a felony of the third degree if the aggregate
amount involved is $30,000 or more but less than $150,000;
             (6)  a felony of the second degree if the aggregate
amount involved is $150,000 or more but less than $300,000; and
             (7)  a felony of the first degree if the aggregate
amount involved is $300,000 or more.
       (d-2)  If it is shown on the trial of the offense that the
defendant knowingly restricted a victim’s access to privileged
information, an offense under this section is:
             (1)  a state jail felony if the value of the aggregate
amount involved is less than $2,500;
             (2)  a felony of the third degree if:
                   (A)  the value of the aggregate amount involved is
$2,500 or more but less than $30,000; or
                   (B)  a client or patient of a victim suffered harm
attributable to the offense;
             (3)  a felony of the second degree if:
                   (A)  the value of the aggregate amount involved is
$30,000 or more but less than $150,000; or
                   (B)  a client or patient of a victim suffered
bodily injury attributable to the offense; and
             (4)  a felony of the first degree if:
                   (A)  the value of the aggregate amount involved is
$150,000 or more; or
                   (B)  a client or patient of a victim suffered
serious bodily injury or death attributable to the offense.
       (e)  When benefits are obtained, a victim is defrauded or
harmed, or property is altered, appropriated, damaged, or deleted
in violation of this section, whether or not in a single incident,
the conduct may be considered as one offense and the value of the
benefits obtained and of the losses incurred because of the fraud,
harm, or alteration, appropriation, damage, or deletion of property
may be aggregated in determining the grade of the offense.
       (f)  A person who is subject to prosecution under this
section and any other section of this code may be prosecuted under
either or both sections.
       (g)  Software is not ransomware for the purposes of this
section if the software restricts access to data because:
             (1)  authentication is required to upgrade or access
purchased content; or
             (2)  access to subscription content has been blocked
for nonpayment.
       Sec. 33.024.  UNLAWFUL DECRYPTION. (a)  A person commits an
offense if the person intentionally decrypts encrypted private
information through deception and without a legitimate business
purpose.
       (b)  Subject to Subsections (b-1) and (b-2), an offense under
this section is a Class C misdemeanor.
       (b-1)  Subject to Subsection (b-2), if it is shown on the
trial of the offense that the defendant acted with the intent to
defraud or harm another, an offense under this section is:
             (1)  a Class C misdemeanor if the value of the aggregate
amount involved is less than $100 or cannot be determined;
             (2)  a Class B misdemeanor if the value of the aggregate
amount involved is $100 or more but less than $750;
             (3)  a Class A misdemeanor if the value of the aggregate
amount involved is $750 or more but less than $2,500;
             (4)  a state jail felony if the value of the aggregate
amount involved is $2,500 or more but less than $30,000;
             (5)  a felony of the third degree if the value of the
aggregate amount involved is $30,000 or more but less than
$150,000;
             (6)  a felony of the second degree if the value of the
aggregate amount involved is $150,000 or more but less than
$300,000; and
             (7)  a felony of the first degree if the value of the
aggregate amount involved is $300,000 or more.
       (b-2)  If it is shown on the trial of the offense that the
defendant knowingly decrypted privileged information, an offense
under this section is:
             (1)  a state jail felony if the value of the aggregate
amount involved is less than $2,500;
             (2)  a felony of the third degree if:
                   (A)  the value of the aggregate amount involved is
$2,500 or more but less than $30,000; or
                   (B)  a client or patient of a victim suffered harm
attributable to the offense;
             (3)  a felony of the second degree if:
                   (A)  the value of the aggregate amount involved is
$30,000 or more but less than $150,000; or
                   (B)  a client or patient of a victim suffered
bodily injury attributable to the offense; and
             (4)  a felony of the first degree if:
                   (A)  the value of the aggregate amount involved is
$150,000 or more; or
                   (B)  a client or patient of a victim suffered
serious bodily injury or death attributable to the offense.
       (c)  It is a defense to prosecution under this section that
the actor’s conduct was pursuant to an agreement entered into with
the owner for the purpose of:
             (1)  assessing or maintaining the security of the
information or of a computer, computer network, or computer system;
or
             (2)  providing other services related to security.
       (d)  A person who is subject to prosecution under this
section and any other section of this code may be prosecuted under
either or both sections.
       SECTION 4.  Section 33.03, Penal Code, is amended to read as
follows:
       Sec. 33.03.  DEFENSES. It is an affirmative defense to
prosecution under Section 33.02 or 33.022 that the actor was an
officer, employee, or agent of a communications common carrier or
electric utility and committed the proscribed act or acts in the
course of employment while engaged in an activity that is a
necessary incident to the rendition of service or to the protection
of the rights or property of the communications common carrier or
electric utility.
       SECTION 5.  The change in law made by this Act applies only
to an offense committed on or after the effective date of this Act.
An offense committed before the effective date of this Act is
governed by the law in effect on the date the offense was committed,
and the former law is continued in effect for that purpose.  For
purposes of this section, an offense was committed before the
effective date of this Act if any element of the offense occurred
before that date.
       SECTION 6.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2017.
Intoxemeters FST .054

DWI laws, they are a changin’

Intoxemeters FST .054

Intoxemeters FST .054 Jay Cohen

Utah lawmakers voted to lower the legal limit for a driver’s blood-alcohol concentration from 0.08 to 0.05. If the Governor signs the bill, it would go into effect December 30, 2018. Compared to Texas, this is significantly different. In Texas a person can be convicted of DWI if they have lost the normal use of their mental or physical faculties, or have a blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, or 0.08 or greater.

Utah would have the toughest drunk-driving laws in the USA.

This means a person could have as little as one drink and wind up behind bars.

These changing laws make it more important than ever to hire the best Houston DWI lawyer. Breath tests are not always right, there are many factors that can cause a breath testing machine to spit out a number that is just not accurate.

Call Jay Cohen 713-225-1900. Keeping innocent people innocent.

 

[via SLTRIB]

Adderall Vyvanse

Legislative mistake reduces penalties for some drug offenses

Adderall Vyvanse

Adderall Vyvanse

The Texas legislature amended Health & Safety Code §481.103 with the intention of outlawing  more synthetic drugs. In an attempt to sell a legal product, individuals have been producing synthetic drugs that have slightly different chemical structures than naturally occurring substances that are already outlawed. These new drugs have a similar effect on the body and could be sold legally. Naturally, law enforcement and the legislature have gotten together to make their jobs more relevant, increase revenue, clog the court systems and prisons, and label more citizens as criminals. Lawmakers were more focused on patting each other on the back and giving high fives than drafting the actual bill. According to the bill, if a drug is approved by the FDA and listed in this penalty group, the penalty group does not apply, and notwithstanding any other law, a person may not be convicted for the manufacture or delivery of the substance under §481.113 or for possession of the substance under §481.116. This resulted in a final change to the law that is counterintuitive and reduces the penalties for some substances from a felony offense to a misdemeanor. Specifically, amphetamine, its salts, optical isomers, and salts of optical isomers (more commonly known as Adderall), lisdexamfetamine, including its salts, isomers, and salts of isomers (more commonly known as Vyvanse), dronabinol, and nabilone. This law went into effect on September 15, 2015, however most prosecutors and defense lawyers were unaware of the change. Many people have been wrongfully charged and likely wrongfully punished for possession of these substances. This is another reason it is important to have a Houston criminal defense lawyer that focuses on drug charges so you can get the best possible result.

If you have been charged with, or convicted of, possession of adderall or vyvanse, click here to contact Jay Cohen or call 713-225-1900 to discuss your case.

The CSI Effect and DUI Trial Reality

 

TV and Hollywood have an amazing ability to create dramatically fantastical worlds, from what is otherwise a far more mundane side of life, and the process of criminal investigation by law enforcement on TV is one of these categories. Thanks to the success of series shows like C.S.I., the general public now has a collective impression that, not only can investigators solve cases from microscopic pieces of evidence at the scene of an alleged crime, they can also tell entire stories via computer generation based on that same evidence. Not surprisingly, people who have never been in a criminal trial proceeding, come in with all sorts of expectations, as well as thresholds that law enforcement must meet to make a good case.

However, what is realistically needed to actually prove a case to a conviction is far from the technical science imagined on TV programs. Instead, a good amount of the evidence used is based on witness statements, written reports by the officers involved, photographs, and the big variable bucket of circumstantial evidence. This last issue is the one that people should really be worried about, because it falls on the assumption that the evidence connecting someone to a general location, time, or place, is enough to support a conviction of guilt.  In fact, no one has to actually prove that the person committed the act per se; placement is enough. It’s a far cry from the world of TV, with it’s fanciful stories of computer-generated explanations, and a very different idea than what the average person thinks is “proof beyond a doubt.”

For a party accused of driving while intoxicated or a DUI, for example, a typical case will more than likely be based on an officer’s report, a toxicology report from the defendant’s blood sample or Breathalyzer test once arrested, and witness statements. Two out of three of those evidence categories are extremely subjective, and influenced by the officer or witnesses’ opinion on the matter, no matter how fact-based the statement. In addition, unless the defendant can create a strong enough counter-argument with his own witnesses or solid scientific evidence, he’s likely to get convicted by a jury, mostly because of the general social sentiment against drunk driving and related accidents.

3D png Judges Gavel

The expertise of a practiced trial attorney, skilled in arguing DUI defense cases, is critical. Not only for basic defense, but for the education and experience in knowing how to counter the low-level basis of evidence typically used by the prosecution in such cases, as well.  Silence is definitely not the tactic to fall back on in these situations. A good defense will introduce far more concrete evidence than a few witness statements, solidly bringing into doubt the prosecution’s version of what occurred. Most importantly though, defendants have to get it clear as soon as possible, there is no CSI threshold the state has to meet in a DUI trial; that’s make-believe on TV. People have been, and often are, convicted on a lot less every day, absent a good defense.

First DWI Offense: What You Need to Know

If you’re like most people, when you realize you’ve received a DWI you’re hungover and feel like dirt. Knowing you tried to drive last night doesn’t make you feel any better. The fact that you feel such remorse shows you aren’t a bad person, but just someone who made a mistake. It’s different for someone who makes five-ish or twenty mistakes, but Texas State Law allows first offenders to prove it was a one-time lack of judgment. It’s not the end of the world, but there is a procedure to go through to resolve the issue.

What You Need to Know

Texas State Law is very specific as to how a DWI is treated by both the DMV and the courts. The first thing to happen is your license is revoked and a temporary permit issued until your court date, at which time your license will be suspended for up to two years unless you agree to have your car equipped with an Interlok Breathalyzer System to prevent it from running without verification of a sober driver. For some people, the license suspension can be the worst aspect of the DWI penalties as it interrupts your ability to conduct routine business.

In addition to the license suspension, if convicted there will be a fine up to $2,000. There is an additional license reinstatement fee of $125 along with payments for the Interlock System. There may be further fees associated with community service and probation along with one-time or ongoing attorney fees as the situation calls for and a fee for a bail bondsman at the time of the initial arrest.

Jail time of course can’t be overlooked as part of the penalty. In addition to the time served as part of the initial arrest, jail time can be from three to 180 days. Additionally, if there was an open container in the vehicle, the minimum becomes six days. A number of factors are evaluated to determine the exact sentence, including such things as gross intoxication, whether minors were in the car, your cooperation with the officer during the arrest, and even your demeanor during court proceedings. There may be additional charges if applicable for other crimes committed during the driving episode, most notably damages or injuries caused.

What You Need to Do

Don’t drive during a license suspension as it can be devastating to the case. Abide by any other instructions given to you by police, jailers or preliminary hearing judges. You may want an alcohol assessment to present in court, along with arranging for character witnesses to appear.

You need to hire an attorney to represent you in court, and follow any advice he may give you. A lawyer may be able to find a technicality in the way the arrest was conducted or how the paperwork was filled out which discards the evidence against you. Otherwise, he’ll be able to argue for leniency and get you the lightest sentence possible.

Motorist Arrested in Grand Prairie After Fatally Running Over Man

Police say a man has been arrested in connection with the Monday manslaughter death of a sleeping man in Grand Prairie. Police were called to the 4500 block of Rosedale Drive around 10:30 p.m. to respond to an argument between possibly intoxicated men. However, when police arrived, Martinon began trying to elude officers in his pickup. While cutting across a grassy area to get to the interstate, Martinon ran over 60-year-old Paul Rummelhart. Martinon then turned off his headlights and lost officers in Dallas’ Ledbetter neighborhood. Police say they were able to identify Martinon based on witness statements. Grand Prairie police solicited the help of the U.S. Marshals Service, who located and arrested Martinon Tuesday night in Dallas.

Officers say Paul Rummelhart has no ties to the Grand Prairie area and believe he was traveling or hitchhiking. He was sleeping in a sleeping bag when he was run over and killed.

Now being held in the Grand Prairie Detention Center, Martinon’s bail is set at $500,000. His manslaughter charge joins prior felony warrants for resisting arrest, evading arrest, and misdemeanor traffic violations.

Penalties in Texas

In Texas, manslaughter is referred to as recklessly causing the death of another human being and comes with penalties of up to 20 years in the department of corrections. Resisting arrest, a Class A Misdemeanor in Texas, and is punishable by up to $4,000 in fines and one year in prison. Felony resisting arrest, however, in which a deadly weapon is used, is punishable by up to ten years and a $10,000 fine.

In addition to jail time and hefty fines, criminal charges affect nearly every aspect of one’s personal life. Following a criminal conviction, many people experience the following personal consequences:

  • Termination from employment
  • Eviction from their rental property
  • Inability to secure new employment
  • Inability to rent property
  • Strained relationships with family
  • Financial hardship
  • Inability to secure education funding
  • Inability to foster or adopt a child
  • Restriction from voting
  • Social stigma

What to Do if You’ve Been Arrested

If you’ve been arrested for evading or resisting arrest, driving while intoxicated, manslaughter, or an unrelated charge, seek counsel from a qualified criminal defense attorney before you participate in police interview or interrogation. Speaking with law enforcement without guidance from a qualified attorney may result in unknowingly incriminating yourself and change the course of your personal and professional future. For the fair representation you deserve, contact Jay Cohen at (713) 352-1637 or by using the short and simple contact form. We strive to provide the best representation at an affordable price to ensure everybody gets the defense they deserve when facing life-altering criminal charges.

Getting Arrested for Marijuana in Light of Increasing Legalization

Marijuana is increasingly becoming legal for both medical and recreational use in many states throughout the country. It is, however, still illegal in most states, depending on how it is being used. This discrepancy in laws can complicate matters when an individual is arrested for marijuana use or possession. The following information discusses the recent laws that have been enacted regarding this issue, how this can affect the case of an individual who has been arrested, and the steps you can take if you have been arrested for marijuana.

The Increasing Legalization of Marijuana For Medical and Recreational Use

There are currently at least 24 states that have legalized some form of marijuana use. Earlier this year Texas Governor Gregg Abbott signed legislation making limited amounts of marijuana legal for medical reasons. While this law is limited in scope and not nearly as broad as laws in some other states, it does show a trend in the overall legalization of the drug. With increased legalization it would seem that arrests for the drug would be in decline. This doesn’t seem to be the case, however, with arrests for marijuana increasing nationwide in 2014. In fact, according to FBI statistics, approximately half of all drug arrests in the United States are marijuana related.

How Increased Legalization Can Affect Being Arrested for Marijuana

Even though many states have now legalized medical or recreational marijuana use, federal law currently does not recognize or protect any type of marijuana use. This conflict between state and federal laws will likely cause increasing problems in our court system. Even if you are arrested by state or local authorities in a state that has legalized marijuana use, it is still possible that you will face charges if you have more than the legal amount or are driving under the influence. If you have been drinking any amount of alcohol this can further complicate the situation.

What You Should Do If You Are Arrested for Marijuana

There are a few important things to keep in mind if you are ever arrested. Don’t answer any questions without an attorney being present. You are not required by law to do so. There are potentially several defenses that could be used if the case goes to court. Potential charges and defense tactics that could be used will depend on a number of circumstances. Because of the intricacies of the law and how you’ll be charged is dependent on many factors, it is imperative to seek legal assistance as quickly as possible. If you have been arrested for marijuana use or possession you need a qualified attorney who has experience handling drug related cases.  Jay Cohen is a Houston based attorney who is committed to defending individuals who have been arrested on alcohol and drug charges. The first consultation and case evaluation is free. Contact Jay Cohen Attorney at Law for more information.

Thanks to Uber, Fewer DWIs in Houston

There have been many concerns about the famed rideshare company, Uber. From complaints that Uber is taking over taxi drivers’ jobs to wonders about how the company will insure drivers and passengers to allegations of sexual assault, there are few complaints that Uber hasn’t heard. But amidst all of the hubbub, there’s one clear benefit to Uber arriving in Houston: fewer cases of drinking and driving have been reported since the rideshare company’s arrival.

Rates of Drinking and Driving in Texas

Texas has more accidents caused by drinking and driving than does nearly any other state in the nation. In fact, in the recent year, drunk driving fatalities represented 39.5 percent of all traffic deaths in the state. And in Houston, the trend is no different; Houston continuously ranks near the top in terms of the number of drunk driving accidents that occur in the area every year.

But the introduction of Uber may change all that.

Providing Safe Rides for Houston Customers

Uber prides itself on the fact that its rideshare service is affordable and that it offers those who have had a drink (or two or more) a safe way to get home. And over the past 18 months—the same amount of time that Uber has been operating in Houston’s city limits—the rate of drunk driving accidents and convictions has fallen dramatically. Before Uber’s arrival in 2013, the number of driving while intoxicated/impaired (DWI) arrests totaled 6,205. One year later, that same number has been reduced by nearly 16 percent to 5,182. And in the first six months of 2015, there have been 2,0888 DWI arrests. If this trend continues, then a 19.4 percent reduction in DWI arrests will be the result.

Is Uber to thank for the decline in DWI arrests?

When Police Chief Charles McClelland was asked by KPRC News 2 whether or not he believes that Uber is the force behind the large decline in the number of DWI arrests, he responded by saying that he believes, “any type of alternative mode of transportation other than people getting behind the wheel drunk,” has some kind of impact.

When a Rideshare Doesn’t Keep You from Driving

Taking a ride share or another alternative mode of transportation when you have had a drink is within your best interest. In the event that you have been charged with a DWI, though, you need the legal services of the attorneys at Jay Cohen Attorney at Law to help you build your defense. To meet with our experienced DWI attorneys today, call us now at (713) 225-1900.

Former State Representative Convicted of Drunk Driving in Texas

Getting convicted of drinking and driving can change your life for the worse. This is especially true if you hold a job where upholding the law is extremely important, such as a teacher or police officer. Former house representative and general counsel for Texas Health and Human Services, Jack Stick, can probably speak to this; Mr. Stick was convicted of a drunk driving charge on Monday, September 21st.

A 2012 Arrest, a 2015 Conviction

Jack Stick’s drinking and driving charge dates all the way back to September 11, 2012, when he was arrested by police officers in Austin after he refused to take a field sobriety test when pulled over by officers. At the time of arrest, Stick’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level was .096 percent, an amount far above the legal limit of .08 percent.

Stick’s Lawyer Says He Wasn’t Drunk

Despite the incriminating evidence against Stick, such as Stick’s confession at the time of arrest that performing a field sobriety test would incriminate him, as well as the BAC level revealed above, Stick’s lawyer, Brian Roarke, told the jury that Stick was “as sober as you and I are here today” at the time of his arrest. He also said that blood alcohol tests are extremely fallible.

Despite the plea, the jury found Stick to be guilty.

Penalties Stick Faces

While the prosecutor pushed for harsh penalties for stick—jail time or an 18-month probationary period and community service and counseling—the judge presiding over the case, Nancy Hohengarten, said she believed a lighter sentence was fair. As such, she sentenced Stick to six days in jail, and a 90-day driver’s license suspension for driving while intoxicated.

How a DUI/DWI Conviction Can Change Your Life

Being convicted of a DUI or a DWI in Texas is embarrassing. What’s more, it can be financially costly, and result in jail time. Perhaps worst of all, it can affect your ability to get hired for a job, find housing, or participate in certain programs or opportunities.

What to Do if Facing DWI Charges in Houston

If you are facing DWI charges in Houston, you need an attorney who can negotiate a plea deal on your behalf to have your sentence reduced, or advocate for you to prove your innocence. At Jay Cohen Attorney at Law, we’re ready to do what’s right for you. Call us today to schedule a consultation and learn more at (713) 225-1900.

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