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Penalties for Intoxication Manslaughter in Texas

Posted by on Aug 17, 2015

Compared to other traffic offenses, alcohol-impaired driving is perhaps considered the most serious among all of them. This is especially true if a drunk driving incident leads to fatalities. In Texas, lawmakers have categorized homicide caused a driver impaired or intoxicated by alcohol or other narcotic substances. This crime is referred to as intoxication manslaughter. Other states might charge the same crime as DUI manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter, or DUI causing injury or death.

Any driver found to have caused the death of another individual while driving drunk could be found guilty of intoxication manslaughter, regardless of whether the victim of the crash is a pedestrian, an occupant of another vehicle, or a passenger in the driver’s own car. The criminal charge also holds true if the victim initially survives the crash, but later succumbs to his or her injuries.

Penalties for intoxication manslaughter differ depending on the individual details of an accident. Certain factors such as the amount of alcohol in one’s system can affect how a judge will rule a case. All in all, however, these penalties remain severe. A convicted individual can expect to serve time in prison, pay a significant amount in fines, as well as commit to additional community service duties. Specifically, intoxication manslaughter can lead to 2 to 20 years imprisonment, up to $10,000 in fines, and up to 800 hours of community service.

On top of these legal consequences, the website of Alexander & Associates notes that getting charged and convicted of intoxication manslaughter can lead to severe personal consequences. Having such a crime on one’s record can have profound effects on a person’s reputation and their ability to secure employment, education, and other similar advancement opportunities. This is more likely to happen when one considers how prosecutors can be overzealous in pursuing defendants, sometimes leading to sentences that are graver than what the evidence warrants.

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