Listen to Attorney Richard C. McConathy discuss how DWI cases are prosecuted in Denton County Texas and how his office defends those who are charged with DWI.
When defending crimes or DWI in Denton county Texas, you have to understand the local community. Denton County, a long time ago, was a small sleepy little community with the University of North Texas as its only source of income. Small farm towns, restaurants; that is all over. Highway I35 is now running right through the middle of the county bringing thousands of individuals into that community. It is extremely important to know the community standards and the attitudes of the local district attorneys. Denton county once had a small prosecution office with maybe ten or fifteen attorneys. It is now expanding, and expanding every year, up to the level of forty. Soon, in five years it may have sixty, rivaling Tarrant County and Dallas. You’ll find in these courts judges who are strict on the law and looking for big numbers to send a message to the community that they’re tough on crime. And you’re going to find prosecutors that are going to do everything they can to ensure that reputation of their local district attorney is maintained. 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. So, you can make two decisions. I’m going to go up there and hope they’ll give me the mercy of the situation and not prosecute me. That is a mistake. Don’t assume just because you’re a first-time offender that they’re not going to come after you. You need to find tough attorneys that are going to go there. Our reputation in Denton County Since 2002 is taking them on toe to toe and getting winning results. Check out our website and you’ll see those results.