A Bryan man remains in jail after an incident Sunday in which he allegedly ran a stop sign and collided with another vehicle. Especially problematic for the man is the suggestion that he was intoxicated when the accident happened; because he has previous DWI convictions, a drunk-driving charge would be a felony for him, rather than a misdemeanor.

Witnesses to the accident said the 48-year-old man was the driver of the car that struck the second vehicle Sunday evening at the intersection of Finfeather Road and Pease Street. Police reported that they could "immediately" smell alcohol on the man's breath and claim to have found an open beer can on the driver's side floor of his vehicle.

There were no reports of injuries to the driver of the other vehicle.

The man was taken to a local hospital, where it was learned that he was having difficulty understanding his surroundings and claimed to have no memory of the accident. He failed sobriety tests and was taken to Brazos County Jail.

If the man is charged with and convicted of drunk driving, it will be his fourth DWI after convictions in 1991, 1994 and 1995. That would make the charge a third-degree felony, which carries a possible fine of up to $10,000 and two to 10 years behind bars.

When the stakes are high, as they will presumably be for this man, it is very important that the accused works closely with the criminal defense attorney who will be representing him or her in court. These attorneys are often an accused last line of defense, so cooperation and honesty are necessary to make the most of this important opportunity.

Source: The Bryan-College Station Eagle, "Drunken driver faces felony charge," May 14, 2012