Texas is one state that enables citizens to possess a concealed handgun license for handguns. In fact, the entire state has approximately 51 million guns in terms of private ownership. This equates to approximately 20% of all of the guns in the entire country. On the other hand, Texas also has the distinction of being the state with one of the largest numbers of DWI arrests in the entire country. If you are a Texas resident as well as a CHL holder, chances are you may be wondering what could happen if you get charged with a DWI.
In Texas, a DWI conviction has penalties that are both administrative and criminal in nature. If you arrested for this for the first time, you will be charged with a class B misdemeanor and will likely have your driver’s license suspended for 90 – 180 days. If you are issued a breath or blood test, yet refuse to submit to either one, your driver’s license will be automatically suspended for 180 days. After the first offense, your license will be reinstated and you will not have to have an interlock device installed on your vehicle.
There is also the chance that you will have to pay a fine of $2,000 and be sentenced to 180 days in jail. If you have a blood alcohol content that is greater than 0.15 at the time of your arrest, you must pay a surcharge of $2,000 annually for three years in order to keep your driver’s license after your arrest.
Furthermore, if you are a CHL holder and have been convicted of a DWI for the first time, this license will be revoked. It can also be suspended for anyone who has been charged with either a class A or class B misdemeanor while the charge is pending. If you have been convicted of either misdemeanor, you will be ineligible to reapply for a CHL for five years.
If you are convicted of a DWI for the second time, this is a class A misdemeanor, which carries a penalty of a $4,000 fine and a jail term of one month to one year. You can also be ordered to serve community service for a term of 200 hours. This type of conviction can also be viewed as you having a substance abuse problem, and the judge could order you to undergo an evaluation, either in an inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation center.
A third DWI conviction will not be charged as a misdemeanor, but will instead be charged as a third-degree felony. This means that you could be sentenced to between two and ten years in prison, as well as a maximum fine of $10,000. You could also be sentenced to community service for a term of 600 hours, as well as ordered into rehabilitation at a substance abuse facility and probation prior to prison time.
If there are any additional charges against you after your third conviction, you stand the chance of suffering even more severe penalties.
If your second or third DWI conviction comes within ten years and you have a CHL license, this license will be suspended and you likely will not be eligible to renew it.