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Texas DWI & UCW Charges: “I got a DWI and They Took My Gun!”

The Coffey Firm - Experienced DWI Attorneys and Criminal Defense Lawyers > Helpful Legal Information  > Texas DWI & UCW Charges: “I got a DWI and They Took My Gun!”

Texas DWI & UCW Charges: “I got a DWI and They Took My Gun!”

texas dwi, texas ucw“Geez, I got a DWI and on top of all that, they took my gun!”  Getting a DWI is stressful.  Getting a DWI and having your gun confiscated is even more stressful!  We, at the Coffey Firm, understand that most people who get a DWI and a UCW did not intentionally go out and plan on getting a DWI while carrying a gun in their vehicle.  Many people form a personal attachment to their gun, it may be a family relic, have sentimental value, or it could be an expensive valuable.  Regardless, we understand the frustration of having to fight two charges at once.  We understand that you do not want a DWI conviction and a UCW (unlawfully carrying a weapon) conviction.  We will do the best we can in defending you.  We will walk you through all the evidence, Texas gun forfeiture laws & Texas DWI law, and options- combined with an in depth understanding of your facts, circumstances, life pressures and priorities.

Some helpful information when facing these two charges include:

  1. Understand that the law makes it illegal to carry a gun when you are convicted of DWI.
  2. Your gun case is a separate case from your DWI.
  3. There are many options and legal considerations for getting your gun back.

We will discuss the objectives of your gun with you (its return, its forfeiture in exchange for various plea options if relevant, etc.) and do the best we can achieving your goal.

What are the Texas Gun Forfeiture Laws?  The law on gun forfeiture and return on a UCW (Texas Penal Code 46.02) is governed by the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Article 18.19 . What is most often relevant is (d):

(d)  A person either convicted or receiving deferred adjudication under Chapter 46, Penal Code, is entitled to the weapon seized upon request to the court in which the person was convicted or placed on deferred adjudication. However, the court entering the judgment shall order the weapon destroyed, sold at public sale by the law enforcement agency holding the weapon or by an auctioneer licensed under Chapter 1802, Occupations Code, or forfeited to the state for use by the law enforcement agency holding the weapon or by a county forensic laboratory designated by the court if:

(1) the person does not request the weapon before the 61st day after the date of the judgment of conviction or the order placing the person on deferred adjudication;
(2) the person has been previously convicted under Chapter 46, Penal Code;
(3) the weapon is one defined as a prohibited weapon under Chapter 46, Penal Code;
(4) the offense for which the person is convicted or receives deferred adjudication was committed in or on the premises of a playground, school, video arcade facility, or youth center, as those terms are defined by Section 481.134, Health and Safety Code; or
(5) the court determines based on the prior criminal history of the defendant or based on the circumstances surrounding the commission of the offense that possession of the seized weapon would pose a threat to the community or one or more individuals.

Please do not lose hope.  Your gun case is just one part of the DWI picture. Without a DWI conviction (unless there are other legal reasons), your gun possession is legal.  Even with a DWI conviction, your chances of getting your gun back are largely in part up to you (see above). We will carefully go over these options and choices and look forward to helping you.

 

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