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Getting Out of Jail in Austin, Texas
General - DWI News

Getting Out of Jail in Austin, Texas

Getting out of jail - City of Austin

How to get RELEASED if you have been ARRESTED and booked into JAIL in Austin or Travis County

1. Personal Bond:
You must see a judge for an arraignment. The judge will set the amount of your bond. Travis County has a pretrial services office in the jail. The pretrial staff will interview every person arrested to see if they will qualify for a personal bond. In Travis County (Austin) you can often be released on personal recognizance (pay no bond). You must agree to appear at your hearing after your release. The judge makes this determination. If you are charged with a felony, assault, or arrested on a warrant, or caused problems while in jail after your arrest, the personal bond will not apply. Contact Pretrial services @ 512-854-9381. You should try to get released on a personal bond. It is a free service provided by Travis County. Once you are released on the personal bond, you must required pay a $ 20.00 administrative fee to the Pretrial Service Office. There may be conditions to be bond. If so, you must abide by those conditions and can be required to pay a higher service fee. If you have been denied a personal bond, you could hire an attorney at this time to help obtain the personal bond.

2. Cash or Surety Bond:
If you can not get a personal bond and you do not qualify for the “Hobby Rule” described below, you must post a cash or surety bond in the amount determined by the judge in your case. You must “put up the bond” amount before you are released from jail. Local bail bondsmen and some attorneys provide this service for a fee typically in the range of 15 to 20 percent of the bond set. This fee is non refundable. The bail bondsman may require collateral or that you have someone else you know with property personally guarantee your bond. They will make this decision on a case by case basis.

3. The “HOBBY RULE” In Austin, Travis County:
If no judge is available at the time of your arrest and you are arrested for DWI in Travis County, you may take advantage of the "Hobby Rule”. .It allows an attorney to obtain someone’s temporary release from jail. You can then come back and post bond in the morning. In Austin, judges are now available until after midnight and they return about 7:00 a.m. Attorneys charge for this service. They typically are called upon to do this in the after hours. To obtain your release and then return with you in the morning to post the personal bond.

 
Do I Have to take a Breathelizer TEST?
Frequently Asked Questions - Example FAQs

DO I HAVE TO TAKE THE BREATHELIZER TEST ?
NO...... YOU DON’T HAVE TO TAKE THE TEST

IF YOU HAVE BEEN DRINKING, DON'T TAKE THE TEST

THE ROADISDE BREATH TESTER--

The Handheld breath tester is inaccurate and not admissible in court. However, most police officers will use the test to determine to arrest you and take you downtown for further testing. Just say no politely. The officer will likley urge you to take it and even say you have no choice. You have a choice.

THE BREATHELIZER TEST AT THE DOWNTOWN STATION ,

The Intoxilyzer machine is kept at the station. The results of this test are admissible in court. It is a very sensitive machine. If you have had anything to drink you will probably fail it. The legal limit of .08 is very low for most adults. Additionally, your body varies wildly in alcohol concentration in the lungs over time based upon weight, the time of drinking, eating, the type of alcoholic beverage, the time of the last drink, the patter of drinking and many other factors. “Spiking” of alcohol concentration may occur for a few minutes and place you over the limit even when overall you are not at the limit.

REMEMBER:

Even though you are on trial for driving while intoxicated, a jury will convict you for TESTING while intoxicated.

Do I have to cooperate if I have been stopped?

Be polite to the officer. He is trying to make an assessment of whether you are DWI. Your weight, how much you drank, what you drank, when you drank and what you ate, the results of the breath test at the station vary widely. Your alcohol concentration can “spike” at a particular time for a period of just a few minutes and put you over the legal limit, even though overall you are below the limit. Too many things can go wrong with this test if you have been drinking. Don’t take it if you have been drinking.

Do not take any field sobriety tests, including the “eye test.” Be respectful and polite to the policeman, but do not allow him to force you to take any tests. Most arrests occur late at night or early in the morning. If you have the odor of alcohol on your breath, the officer will not allow you to drive away. You are stopped and you are busted! Cooperation with his tests will not help you even if he says that you can help yourself by taking his tests. Even if you pass his tests, and people rarely do, he will arrest you and take you to jail for a breath test just to “be sure” that you are not drunk.

Do not make ANY statements to the policeman about drinking BEFORE you have been arrested. These statements are automatically admissible in court. You do not have to lie. Simple remain silent. Your silence cannot be used against you.

What must I do at the station ?

-DO NOT TAKE ANY BREATH TESTS

-ASK FOR A LAWYER IN THE VIDEO ROOM IMMEDIATELY AND REFUSE TO MAKE ANY STATEMENTS

-STAND IN ONE PLACE AND POLITELY REFUSE TO MOVE AROUND

-KEEP ASKING FOR A LAWYER, AND WHEN THE OFFICER TRIES TO GET YOU TO WALK AROUND, DON’T. IF HE SAYS THAT THERE IS A PHONE ON THE WALL TO CALL THE LAWYER, SAY ONLY “I WILL CALL HIM LATER.”

-DO NOT WAIVE YOUR RIGHTS

-DO NOT ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS

-BE POLITE – tell the oficer your name and address only.

EVERYTHING that you say or do on the video is going to be used against you. Make sure that you behave in a polite and sensible manner. Remember that you are on video, they can’t do anything to hurt you. The officers are generally very professional, and they would not do anything to hurt you.

Will I lose my drivers license?

The officer is going to confiscate your license. However, he cannot suspend it. If you request an administrative hearing within 15 days you license will not be suspended for several months, if at all. Even if your license is later suspended by a judge, you can obtain an occupation license. This license allows you to drive six days out of the week and during any 12 hours out of the 24 hours of those days. The schedule is mostly up to you.

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS!

You have a right to remain silent. That is, you do not have to answer any questions which a police officer asks you during a DWI encounter. Remember: everything you say (even things which you may think are helpful to you) will be used against you.

You are not required to perform field sobriety tasks. If you believe that you may be intoxicated, a polite refusal to perform these tasks will benefit you greatly in the inevitable proceedings which will follow. Politely refuse and look down or away when the officer attempts to perform the "pen test" on your eyes. Remember: if it is after dark and you have the odor of an alcoholic beverage on your breath, the officer is going to arrest you whether or not you think you have passed the tests.

You have a right to refuse a breath or blood test. You are not required to blow into the hand-held machine at the scene of the traffic stop. There is no penalty for this refusal. The results of this machine are not admissible in court. If you are asked to perform a breath test after you are arrested and while you are at the police station, you are not required to submit to this test. There is currently no criminal sanction for this refusal. However, there is a potential drivers license suspension sanction for a refusal.

You have a right to a hearing before your license is suspended. Whether you fail a breath test or you refuse a breath test, the Department of Public Safety will attempt to suspend your drivers license. However, they are not always successful. You or your lawyer MUST request that hearing WITHIN 15 DAYS OF YOUR ARREST DATE or the hearing is WAIVED AND YOUR LICENSE WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY SUSPENDED. Contact us today to avoid your license from being suspended.

You have a right to a lawyer and a jury trial. Most people believe that they have hopeless cases, that a defense is too expensive, that most people lose their cases, and that a guilty plea is their best and cheapest option. All of these concerns are inaccurate assumptions, or just plain wrong! You are not in a position to judge your case, you need a lawyer.
1. Many lawyers now take credit cards or other means of payment.
2. Modern jurors are aware of the problems associated with police officers in traffic stops, and they find people not guilty in DWI cases every day.
3. There is very rarely a "hopeless" case. This is an evaluation which only can be made with the advice of counsel.
4. Probation means a criminal conviction which remains on your record for the rest of your life. You must pay a fine, pay court costs, do dozens of hours of community service, take psychological evaluations, report monthly to a probation officer who has the power to put you in jail for failures of your probation conditions, take urine tests, refrain from the use of alcohol and going to places where alcohol is served, and in some counties in Texas the judges will require you to serve a jail sentence as a condition of probation.
5. If it is your second DWI, the jury is ordinarily not allowed to know of your prior conviction. Since a prior offense is a punishment issue, going to the court for punishment effectively prevents the jury from knowing about your prior case when they determine your guilt or innocence.

 
TEXAS DWI LAWS
General - DWI News

DWI - DUI Laws in the State of Texas -- Driving While Intoxicated:


DWI is treated as a serious crime in Texas. Texas DWI-DUI laws provide for punishment that includes significant fines, jail time, license suspension

The Legal Limit in Texas .08 BAC In Texas the legal limit for intoxication is .08 blood alcohol concentration (BAC). Although the limit is .08, any driver can be stopped and cited for impaired driving due to alcohol or other drugs regardless of BAC. Texas If you are under 21, it is illegal to drive with any detectable amount of alcohol. Any amount of beer, wine or liquor will trigger the penalties that typically include (1) 30-day driver’s license suspension (2) up to a $500 fine (3) 8 to 12 hours of community service

What can happen when you're stopped by an officer who suspects your are DWI.
A law enforcement officer may ask you to do a field sobriety test and/or take a breathalyzer .A breathalyzer is used to measure how much alcohol is in your system,

DWI Penalties --- First Offense:
• up to a $2,000 fine
• 72 hours to 180 days in jail
• driver’s license suspension: 90 days to 1 year

DWI Penalties ----- Second Offense:
• up to a $4,000 fine
• 30 days to 1 year in jail
• driver’s license suspension: 180 days to 2 years

DWI Penalties ----- Third Offense:
• up to a $10,000 fine
• 2 to 10 years in penitentiary
• driver’s license suspension: 180 days to 2 years


Under 21
If you are under 21, it is illegal to drive with any detectable amount of alcohol. Any amount of beer, wine or liquor will trigger the penalties that typically include (1) 30-day driver’s license suspension (2) up to a $500 fine (3) 8 to 12 hours of community service.

If you’re under 21, the mere possession of alcohol is illegal. Penalties that can be imposed include
• 60-day driver’s license suspension
• up to a $500 fine
• 20 to 40 hours of community service
• mandatory attendance in alcohol-awareness classes

A second offense leads to greater penalties.
Over 17 and DWI

If you are over 17 and you are DWI (driving while intoxicated) ie. your BAC is .08 or higher, penalties under the Texas DWI can include:
• up to a $2,000 fine
• 72 hours to 180 days in jail

driver’s license suspension of 90 days to one year

 

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