What is intoxication assault and its potential punishment?

Intoxication assault is when you cause serious bodily injury to another person by accident or mistake, either while committing the act of BWI or FWI or while operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated in a public place (DWI), and by reason of your intoxication.

“Serious bodily injury” means injury that creates substantial risk of death or that causes serious permanent disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.

Intoxication Assault Penalties

Intoxication assault is a felony DWI of the third degree, which can result in a fine up to $10,000 and 2 years to 10 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, and a driver’s license suspension ranging from 180 days to 2 years. If you are convicted, you’ll be assessed an annual $1,000-$2,000 surcharge fee required every year for 3 years in order to retain your driver’s license. A felony conviction also disqualifies you from voting and possessing a firearm.

Probation and the Deadly Weapon

If you are granted probation, you will be required to serve a 30-day jail sentence. If your vehicle was driven in a way that made it a “deadly weapon,” then there is an additional penalty that prohibits good time credit in prison to be considered for early release until half of the sentence has been satisfied. This condition can also limit your ability to receive a probation.

Intoxication Assault and the Ignition Interlock Requirement

If you are convicted of intoxication assault, as a condition of bond, the court will require that you install a vehicle ignition interlock device on your car and you will not be allowed to operate a motor vehicle without one. This interlock device determines the presence of alcohol in your breath and if it detects a certain level of alcohol, the vehicle is temporarily disabled. In some circumstances, the court may also order you not operate a motor vehicle while your case is pending. The court will also order you to abstain from use of alcohol and any controlled substance without a prescription. The court may enforce this order by mandating random drug testing.