Free Consultation

Intoxication Assault

A typical arrest for driving while intoxicated (DWI, also known as DUI or drunk driving) in Texas will result in a misdemeanor charge, with both criminal and civil penalties if an alleged offender is convicted.

The situation is much more serious, however, when an alleged DWI incident results in serious bodily injury to another person, which may lead to a charge of Intoxication Assault (or DWI Assault) under Section 49.07 of the Texas Penal Code. Intoxication Assault without aggravating circumstances is a third-degree felony in Texas. 

An accident while under the influence of alcohol or drugs may result in not only the loss of a person's driver's license, but also the loss of his or her freedom.

That is because a conviction for any felony in Texas requires an offender to spend time in jail or prison — as well as the possibility of paying heavy fines and several other penalties — even though most drivers charged with Intoxication Assault did not intend to harm anyone. (Intention is not an element that must be proved.)

Intoxication Assault Lawyers in Collin County, Texas

If you were charged with Intoxication Assault for causing serious bodily injury to another person as a result of driving under the influence (DUI), it is very important that you seek the counsel of an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible after your arrest.

The knowledgeable DWI attorneys at The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy want you to know that you must request an administrative license revocation (ALR) hearing within 15 days of arrest in order to retain your driver's license if you either refused to submit to a chemical test for alcohol or if you failed a breath or blood test.

The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy represents clients throughout Collin County, including Plano, Garland, McKinney, Frisco, Carrollton, Richardson, and Allen, as well as clients in Rockwall and Grayson counties. Call us at 469-304-3422 right now to schedule a free, confidential consultation, where we can review your case and explain your legal options.


Information about Intoxication Assault in Collin County


Back to top

Intoxication Assault in Collin County

The Texas Penal Code, Title 10, Chapter 49, § 49.07 states that a person commits the offense of Intoxication Assault if he or she, by accident or mistake:

  • Operates a motor vehicle in a public place while intoxicated, or
  • Operates an aircraft, watercraft, or amusement ride while intoxicated, or assembles a mobile amusement ride while intoxicated, and
  • By reason of that intoxication causes serious bodily injury to another person

Definitions of Terms Related to Intoxication Assault

The Intoxication Assault Law defines "serious bodily injury" as an injury that “creates a substantial risk of death or that causes serious permanent disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.”

The other terms related to Intoxication Assault are defined in the Texas statutes, including motor vehicle, aircraft, watercraft, amusement ride, mobile amusement ride, intoxicated and alcohol concentration.

Texas defines a "motor vehicle" as "a device in, on or by which a person or property is or may be transported or drawn on a highway, except a device used exclusively on stationary rails or tracks," such as railroad cars (Texas Penal Code, Title 7, Chapter 32, Subchapter C, § 32.34(2)). Motor vehicles include cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, water scooters, airplanes, helicopters and even riding lawn mowers, but not trains.

"Aircraft" is defined in the Texas Transportation Code, Title 3, Chapter 24, § 24.001(1) as "a device that is invented, used, or designated for air navigation or flight, other than a parachute or other device used primarily as safety equipment."

A "watercraft" is defined in § 49.01(4) of the Texas Penal Code as any of the following:

  • A vessel
  • One or more water skis
  • An aquaplane
  • Another device used for transporting or carrying a person on water, other than a device propelled only by the current of water

"Amusement ride" means "a mechanical device that carries passengers along, around, or over a fixed or restricted course or within a defined area for the purpose of giving the passengers amusement, pleasure, or excitement" (Texas Occupations Code, Title 13, Subtitle D, Chapter 2151, Subchapter A, § 2151.002(1)).

In addition, a person must have "actual physical control" of a motor vehicle, aircraft, watercraft, or amusement ride in order to be "operating" the vehicle.

"Mobile amusement ride" means "an amusement ride that is designed or adapted to be moved from one location to another and is not fixed at a single location" (Id., § 2151.002(6)).

"Intoxicated" is defined under the Texas Penal Code § 49.01(2) as:

  • Not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties by reason of the introduction of alcohol, a controlled substance, a drug, a dangerous drug, a combination of two or more of those substances, or any other substance into the body;  or
  • Having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more

Under Texas P.C. § 49.01(1), "alcohol concentration" (also known as blood-alcohol concentration or BAC) means the number of grams of alcohol per:

  • 210 liters of breath
  • 100 milliliters of blood, or
  • 67 milliliters of urine

Back to top

Texas Penalties for Intoxication Assault

Intoxication Assault is classified as a third-degree felony, but aggravating factors may elevate the charge to a second-degree felony, with enhanced penalties. Intoxication Assault may be punished as a second-degree felony if it is shown at trial that the offender:

  • Caused serious bodily injury to a peace officer, a firefighter, or emergency medical services personnel while in the actual discharge of an official duty
  • Caused serious bodily injury to another (person) in the nature of a traumatic brain injury that results in a persistent vegetative state

A charge of Intoxication Assault may result from any type of motor vehicle or boating accident. Even if only one car or boat is involved, the prosecutor may proceed with charges against the vehicle or vessel operator even if a family member or friend refuses to press charges.

Criminal punishment for Intoxication Assault is harsh, depending on the severity of the offense:

  • Third-Degree Felony — Punishable by two to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000, or both
  • Second-Degree Felony — Punishable by two to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000, or both

In addition to the penalties listed above, the additional civil (administrative) punishments may include any of the following:

  • Administrative and court fees
  • Suspension of driver’s license
  • Mandatory attendance at a DWI education class
  • Required Drug or Alcohol Assessment
  • Random drug or alcohol testing
  • Mandatory alcohol or drug treatment program
  • Probation and/or community service
  • Installation of an ignition interlock device (IID)
  • Driver Responsibility Surcharges of $1,000 to $2,000 per year for three years imposed by the state Department of Public Safety (DPS)
  • Expensive SR-22 insurance
  • Loss of the right to vote or own a gun due to a felony conviction
  • Limited professional and educational opportunities as a result of a felony conviction

Back to top

Offenses Related to Intoxication Assault

Other criminal charges often accompany a charge of Intoxication Assault. Some of these include:

  • Reckless Driving, Texas Transportation Code § 545.401 — Driving a vehicle in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to  $200 and/or up to 30 days in the county jail.
  • Driving with an Invalid License, Texas Transportation Code § 521.457 — It is a Class A misdemeanor to operate a motor vehicle with a canceled, suspended, revoked, or expired driver's license when a driver causes or is at fault in a motor vehicle accident that results in serious bodily injury.
  • Leaving the Scene of Accident (“Hit and Run”), Texas Transportation Code § 550.021 — It is a third-degree felony if a person operating a motor vehicle is involved in an accident resulting in serious bodily injury and does not:
    • Immediately stop at the scene of the accident or as close to the scene as possible
    • Immediately return to the scene of the accident if the vehicle is not stopped at the scene of the accident
    • Immediately determine whether another person is involved in the accident, and if a person is involved in the accident, whether that person requires aid, or
    • Remain at the scene of the accident until exchanging information and/or rendering aid

Note: A related offense, Intoxication Manslaughter, is second-degree felony detailed in the Texas Penal Code, § 49.08. A person commits the offense of Intoxication Manslaughter if he or she:

  • Operates a motor vehicle in a public place while intoxicated, or
  • Operates an aircraft, watercraft, or amusement ride while intoxicated, or assembles a mobile amusement ride while intoxicated, and
  • By reason of that intoxication causes the death of another person by accident or mistake

Back to top

Additional Resources

Texas Penal Code — Intoxication Assault — Read the Texas state laws related to Intoxication Assault and other statutes that address intoxication-related crimes.

Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) — Alcohol Related Offenses — The Texas DPS offers information about DWI and related matters on its website, including driver’s license suspensions and reinstating a license after an intoxication assault offense.

Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) — Crash Reports — Access crash reports at the TxDOT website, which also has statistics about alcohol-related accidents and crashes. A Collin County office is located at:

Collin County TxDOT Office
1800 North Graves, Suite 165 
McKinney, TX 75070
Phone: (972) 547-5020

Find Attorneys for Intoxication Assault in Plano, Texas

If you were charged with Intoxication Assault in Plano, Texas, or in Collin County, Texas or anywhere north or northeast of Dallas, contact The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your case.

The experienced DWI attorneys at The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy know the laws related to intoxication assault and we will evaluate your case and help you devise a strategy to defend yourself. The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy serves clients throughout Collin County, including Plano, Garland, McKinney, Carrollton, Frisco, Richardson, and Allen, as well as Rockwall and Grayson counties.

Our skilled lawyers may be able to find problems with the prosecution's case, flaws in the DWI tests that were conducted, or with the arrest itself, which may result in a reduction or dismissal of charges. You have little time to lose in order to retain your driving privileges, so contact The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today at 469-304-3422 about your case.

Free Consultation
Our Office
map Plano, TX
5700 Granite Pkwy #200 Plano, TX 75024
View Map
5068 W Plano Pkwy #300 Plano, TX 75093
View Map
Allen, TX
1333 W McDermott Dr #200 Allen, TX 75013
View Map
Dallas, TX
15110 North Dallas Pkwy #400 Dallas, TX 75248
View Map
Primary office location in Dallas, TX
DWI Case Results
  • DWI Blood Test Case + Prescription Meds Dismissed (Cr200606211)
  • DWI Breath Test Case, Result Of .224 Dismissed (Mb0453171)
  • DWI Breath Test Refusal Not Guilty (005-84171-05, Ccl6)
  • DWI Breath Test Refusal Dismissed (1158539)
  • DWI, Open Container Dismissed (Mb0534487)
  • DWI, Accident + Open Container Not Guilty (M0524353)
  • DWI Dismissed, Refiled As Obstruction (M0460867)
  • 2nd DWI, Breath Test Refusal Dismissed (Mb-0262214-G Ccc6)
  • 3rd DWI Breath Test Refusal Dismissed (0913260d Cdc3)
  • Intoxication Assault, Breath Test Case, Result of .17 Dismissed (F09-52586)
  • DWI, Accident Not Guilty (M0538149)
  • DWI, Evading Police Not Guilty (M0640450)
  • DWI, Passed Out At The Wheel Not Guilty (Cr200707935)
View More Results
Client Testimonials

I was charged with DWI in Collin County, Texas. I heard that this is a tough place to get a DWI charge defeated. Fortunately, I hired Richard McConathy and Brian Bolton. They took it all the way and won my case. I owe these guys alot. Don't mess with any lawyer that can't compare with these guys. Thank you Richard and Brian.

William H. Collin County DWI
Proud Members Of These Organizations:
Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
Dallas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association