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DWI Offender Charged with Felony Murder


18-year-old Zulema Gonzalez has died as a result of of a DWI accident on the the Eastex Freeway caused by 31-year-old Ryan McLaughlin. The judge accepted the charge from the Harris County prosecutor after being informed about two prior DWI convictions of Ryan McLaughlin. McLaughlin was charged with felony murder.

The DA’s office of Montgomery County stated they want to stop DWI fatalities by doing more and by supporting new state legislation House Bill 1327. This new bill would increase penalties for 2nd DWI offenses that cause fatalities to life in prison.

MORE: Repeat DWI Offender Charged with Murder, 100K Bond

Some hope that this move in Austin will curb DWI offenses, but here in Houston we see it differently. Crime is crime. If you do the crime you do the time. Don’t clamp down of the free citizenry, just lock up the offenders and throw away the key, as is being done in this case.

Definition of Texas DWI

In the state of Texas, DWI or driving while intoxicated means drunk driving. Texas blood alcohol concentration levels determine if you are drunk and they include:

  • 21 years of age and younger- any amount of alcohol detected
  • 21 years of age and older- 0.08 percent
  • Commercial driving- 0.04 percent

Body, weight, and gender are affected by alcohol use. Alcohol and driving is an extremely dangerous combination.

Houston DWI Cases & Alcohol Related Crimes

Many DWI crimes are the result of a lack of responsibility on part of the drunk driver. The Houston Police Department has the authority to make arrests when alcohol is involved with driving. It is against the law for an open beer can to be in a vehicle while driving or parked and this is a violation of the open container law.

In Houston, Texas an open container violation can result in a maximum fine of $500 and it is classified as a Class C misdemeanor. This is just one example of alcohol laws in the State of Texas. Other alcohol crimes involved with driving are much more serious and may include being charged with a felony. DWI offenses can lead to the following:

  • Loss of driver’s license
  • Arrest
  • Jail time
  • Permanent criminal record
  • Community service
  • Probation
  • Loss of job
  • Loss of family and friends
  • Fatalities
  • Fines and penalties
  • DWI intervention programs
  • Increase in auto insurance
  • Attorney fees and much more………………

Not only are there serious criminal charges associated with DWI offenses, but there criminal charges when driving a vehicle while intoxicated on other substances as well. DUI is when drugs are classified with using and driving and DUI means driving under the influence. Driving and taking drugs whether they are prescription or street drugs, can produce the same serious hazards as driving while intoxicated. Lab tests can be conducted to determine the use of the substance used while operating a motor vehicle.

If Facing DWI Charges in Houston should you do the blood test?

Learn More:

DWI Offenses

Non-Aggravated DWI offenses are classified in three categories which include 1st, 2nd, and 3rd offenses. In Texas, ignition interlock devices may be required as a requirement for probation if a person hopes to avoid jail for a DWI related criminal case. These devices are installed to prevent the driver from driving while intoxicated. It works by having the driver blow into a breathalyzer that measures the alcohol level in the bloodstream of the blower. If the device determines the alcohol use is at or over the limit, then the vehicle will not start, and the court will be notified of the attempt to activated the vehicle while being intoxicated. This device has been in use for quite some time now and has proved to saved many lives so far.

Charged With DWI in Houston?

If charged with a DWI or DUI offense, then you need to contact an attorney as soon as possible. There are a number of excellent DWI lawyers in Houston which we’ve listed below.

The Samuelson Law Firm, 17225 El Camino Real #446, Houston, TX 77058
Phone: 281-332-5600

Houston DWI Lawyer Tad A. Nelson, 405 Main St #840, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: 713-489-7373

Billy Skinner & Associates, 712 Main St #2450, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: 713-600-7777

Drunk driving offenses are serious cases which can negatively affect your life in more ways than one. Should you or a family member have to address such a charge, it’s highly recommended that you consult with a skilled DWI defense attorney.

We recommend working with Houston DWI Lawyer Tad A. Nelson should you be in the market for a qualified drunk driving defense lawyer in Texas. The law firm provides legal defense counsel for every crime related to driving while intoxicated. This includes intoxication manslaughter, misdemeanor DWI offenses, felony drunk driving charges, DUI with a child passenger present, public intoxication, open container violations, and he also represents individuals facing the loss of their driver’s license at administrative license revocation hearings.

If you’re looking for defense lawyer that’s worth his weight in gold, he is the criminal justice attorney to consult. If you have any questions, call his law office at 713-489-7373.

DWI Offender Charged with Felony Murder

Categories: Crime

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