San Francisco Bay Area DUI Blog

San Francisco DUI Attorney Files: Colorado DWAI Conviction Constitutes a Prior In Texas

Posted by Paul Burglin on Fri, Apr 20, 2012

State of Texas v. Christensen, Not Reported in S.W.3d, 2011 WL 2176656 (Tex.App.-Dallas)

San Francisco DUI Lawyer Paul Burglin offers this case example: One may be charged in Colorado with DWAI (driving while ability impaired) or DUI.  While the former is a less serious offense requiring a lesser showing of impairment, the element of impairment is defined much the same as what is required in Texas for a DUI conviction.  Hence, a DWAI conviction in Colorado is considered a prior DUI in Texas.

Editor’s Note:  The key to assessing whether Colorado’s DWAI may be properly considered a prior DUI/DWI in another state, is to compare the elements of proof required for a Colorado DWAI conviction with what is required for a DUI/DWI conviction in the other state.  California, for example, has found it insufficient for use as a prior in the criminal court but acceptable for use in administrative suspension actions by the Dept. of Motor Vehicles.  See McDonald v. Dept. of Motor Vehicles (2000) 77 Cal.App.4th 677. 

Have you been charged with a DUI San Francisco, DUI Marin, DUI Sonoma or DUI Napa? My name is Paul Burglin and I am a San Francisco Bay area drunk driving attorney who for over 25 years has specialized in drunk driving defense in San Francisco, Marin, Sonoma, Napa and surrounding communities. I am also the co-author of "California Drunk Driving Law" San Francisco DUI Attorney

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