Family member was arrested for probation violation after blowing into the breathalyzer and failing. He is on probation for 3rd DWI. What are we looking at as far as punishment to be awarded?
The punishment will be the same or less than the term agreed on in his plea. The circumstances of his case will be very important. For instance, if he has done well on probation otherwise and this is his first offense, he might receive some additional time in jail, but be continued on probation. On the other hand, if it appears that he is not taking probation seriously, this could result in probation being revoked and sentence in prison being ordered. That is a wide range of possibilities and it would be difficult to predict the outcome even if more facts were known to the attorney. Clearly, something is not working and repeated violations will certainly lead to prison. The District Judge in Rockwall does not have much patience for DWI offenders, so this is a very dangerous situation. Serious alcohol rehab is required if this person is to avoid prison-not just AA and DWI education, which are clearly not enough for this person. Consult with a VERY EXPERIENCED DWI ATTORNEY who works regularly with the DWI courts in Collin and/or Dallas county so they are trained in the rehab options and agencies in the DWF area for your best guidance.
While laws vary from state to state in general the statutory maximum penalty for the original offense would be the possible maximum sentence one could receive for having violated probation. Keep in mind that a "violation of probation" is not a "new" crime in and of itself. It is a violation of the rules, (which can include having perpetrated a new crime), of the grant of probation the person received for the original offense. Therefore, if the DWI 3rd carried a maximum penalty of say 5 years then this family member could be sentence to a term of incarceration of any number of years up to 5 years. It is also possible that they can continue his or her probation with new terms and conditions as well as extend the period of probation. Much of how this will be handled is going to be dictated in a large degree by what kind of probationer this family member has otherwise been. If he or she has been missing appointments, late with paying his or her fines, testing positive for alcohol or drugs then he or she should probably expect to be dealt with harshly.
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