Listen to Attorney Richard C. McConathy discuss how DWI cases are prosecuted in Dallas County, Texas and how his office defends those who are charged with DWI.
Dallas county Texas has been in my family’s criminal defense business for seventy years. My father, grandfather, and myself have practiced in this county, Big D as they like to call it. But Big D also has got some dangers in it. Regardless of who the DA is, Democrat or Republican, you better be sure they’re going to be coming after you, particularly on DWI. Mothers against drunk driving’s’ world capital is in Irving Tx, a short 20 minutes from the courthouse. Every day representatives from that organization sit in the courtrooms monitoring both local district attorneys and the judges to see if they’re getting soft on DWI. And you better believe they’re not. When trying to look in the crystal ball of the case and determine what is going to be the outcome of this DWI, there’s so many factors that could take place: bad facts for the government, good facts for the defense, law may change, the court of criminal appeals may come down and give a ruling that sweeps away most of the prosecution’s tactics. In addition to that, local politics can make a major play decision on how your case is prosecuted. And also, what is happening in the news. Unfortunately, politics and how the people feel has an effect on our prosecutors. If someone recently dies in a crash and it gets on the news, you better be prepared and so does your defense lawyer for tough prosecution. Outcomes that this office has achieved over in my seventeen years of being part of this firm are that we’ve received not guilty from the juries, which is where we go in front of six individuals, argue your case, present the facts, the DA presents their facts, and at the end of the day they just say there is not enough evidence here or proof beyond a reasonable doubt to find you guilty. Other ways are negotiating a dismissal prior to trial with the district attorney. Either they don’t have the evidence, or there is a problem with their witnesses, or politics is flipped in their head. Other options are to try to find the middle ground which is, well, we’ll be able to take a deal on this case if you’re willing to dismiss the DWI and offer me an obstruction of highway or reckless driving charge. But, there are times when both the judge and the district attorney are coming down hard on the client and taking a deal or going to trial is very dangerous. Therefore, sometimes we have to go open to the court. In going open to the court, we may not always get what we want, but we’re getting less than what the district attorney is offering us. Right now, you’ve got a very serious question to ask yourself: are you going to simply lay back and let these people do what they want to do to you? Or are you going to find tough, hard, and smart lawyers, who are going to go in there and battle toe to toe with this district attorney’s office to find you the best result we can.