Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a common criminal offense in Texas. Drunk drivers can cause horrifying and fatal crashes, so the state is aggressive in its prosecution of them.
Although most DWIs are victimless crimes, those accused of impaired driving may have to worry about losing their license, paying large fines and even incarceration. Those who suffer from alcoholism are at higher risk than others of making mistakes that are criminal because of their addiction.
If you find yourself facing DWI charges and acknowledge that you have a drinking problem, it may be possible for you to avoid criminal court through pre-trial diversion.
There are specialty courts for people with substance abuse issues
Incarceration may not help someone who is an addict. In fact, the trauma of going to prison might worsen someone’s substance abuse problem.
Texas gives those accused of DWIs and drug offenses an opportunity to keep their criminal record clean. There are specialty courts that will hear cases from those with substance abuse issues and help them get treatment rather than punishing them for their mistakes.
What does DWI/drug court involve?
If you qualify to go through the specialty courts, you will likely need to have an extensive conversations with a judge and other court employees about your background and your struggles with addiction. The specialty courts have teams of professionals who work closely with one another to help supervise and support those staring down their addiction.
The courts may order therapy or in-patient rehab. They will also likely require that you meet with the judge frequently so that they can monitor your progress and understand the unique concerns of your situation.
Anyone charged with DWI, especially those with alcoholism, may want to look in to whether the DWI/drug courts are an option for them. Your attorney can help you.