Public Intoxication in Arlington


Public Intoxication is a severe criminal offense, punishable by arrest, a maximum $500 fine, and a devastating permanent conviction in certain circumstances. This charge is usually a class C misdemeanor though some repeat offenders are subject to an enhanced maximum sentence of 6 months jail, and up to a $2,000 fine. An Arlington Public Intoxication charge requires a serious legal approach to avoid the most punitive of these measures. Learn more.

  • What is Public Intoxication in Tarrant County Texas? Public Intoxication is a class C misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum $500 fine in Tarrant County. This offense arises when a person appears in public while intoxicated to the extent they endanger themselves or others. Offenders are frequently subject to arrest and, in some cases, a permanent criminal conviction, which can be highly prejudicial to many individuals. Learn more.
  • What is the sentence for Public Intoxication in Arlington Texas? The sentence for Public Intoxication in Arlington includes an arrest, a maximum $500 fine, community service, alcohol awareness, and a criminal conviction in some instances. After two convictions, a third Public Intoxication offense is enhanced to a class B misdemeanor, punishable by a 72 hour to 180 day jail sentence and up to a $2,000 fine. Learn more.


The first offense for Public Intoxication is a class C misdemeanor, carrying a maximum $500 fine. However, even a first offense can result in an arrest and a criminal record. A Public Intoxication conviction can be devastating and create licensing and disciplinary issues for Texas teachers, and nurses. Learn more.

  • Can a Public Intoxication charge be dropped in Arlington Texas? Public Intoxication charges are dropped, dismissed, and resolved without conviction every day in Arlington and area courts. Local law enforcement consider these serious charges and will not dismiss them merely as a gesture of good will. An effective Public Intoxication defense requires a comprehensive legal strategy. Learn more.
  • How long does Public Intoxication stay on your record in Arlington Texas? Public Intoxication charges remain permanently on criminal records in Arlington Texas, even when the case is dismissed. However, certain offenses may qualify for an Expunction, a powerful legal tool that will destroy all records of qualifying charges. Learn more.


There is no city ordinance that prohibits drinking in public in Arlington. It is a criminal offense for a person to become intoxicated in public to the point the person endangers themselves or others.

  • Which of these are signs of Public Intoxication in Arlington? Arlington law enforcement officers are well trained in investigating signs of intoxication including slurred speech, glassy, bloodshot eyes, the odor of intoxicants and difficulties with divided-attention tasks. Intoxication suspects are advised to limit interaction with police so as to preserve important legal defenses. Learn more.
  • What is a class C misdemeanor in Arlington Texas? Class C misdemeanor is a classification of crimes in Arlington that are punishable by a maximum $500 fine only. These offenses are common but can still impose devastating collateral consequences for Texas professionals. For example, some offenses can jeopardize licensing and create disciplinary issues for Texas nurses, teachers, financial executives, and military members. Learn more.


Texas law provides that a driver is intoxicated if they have a 0.08 BAC or if they lose the normal use of their mental or physical faculties due to intoxicants, including legal drugs or alcohol. A person is also legally intoxicated if they appear in public while intoxicated to the degree they endanger themselves or others. 

  • Is it illegal to walk around drunk in Arlington? It is illegal for a person to walk around while drunk to the extent that they pose a danger to themselves or another in Arlington. This conduct is subject to arrest and prosecution for Public Intoxication.
  • What are the elements of Public Intoxication in Texas? Public Intoxication in Texas does not require proof of a specific BAC but only that the Defendant endangered themselves or another due to their level of intoxication. This is an admittedly broad standard, which gives police wide discretion in these cases. An effective Public Intoxication defense challenges an officer’s experience and ability to make this judgment. Learn more.


Intoxication Assault is the resulting felony charge when an intoxicated driver causes serious bodily injury to another, including their passenger. This offense is a third degree felony, punishable by a 2 to 10 year term of imprisonment and a maximum $10,000 fine. Additionally, a felony conviction will suspend a person’s Second Amendment rights. Learn more.

  • What are the 4 four categories of intoxication as defined by the intoxication guidelines? Four common categories of functions affected by intoxication include speech, balance, coordination, and behavior. Alcohol, and other intoxicants, affects every individual differently and to varying degrees. For example, novice drinkers may exhibit greater impairment with small amounts of alcohol. Learn more.
  • What blood level is classified as intoxicated in Arlington? A driver with a 0.08 BAC is considered legally intoxicated in Arlington, Texas, and in many US states. Additionally, a minor with any detectable blood alcohol level is subject to arrest and criminal charges. Learn more.


There are several tests to discern a person’s level of intoxication, including breathalyzer and blood tests.  Law enforcement are also specifically trained to investigate whether a person is legally intoxicated using a battery of different field sobriety tests. Intoxication suspects are advised to refuse all tests so as to preserve important legal defenses. Learn more.

  • What happens when you get a PI in Texas? A person who is charged with Public Intoxication is usually arrested and detained until they regain their sobriety. They must thereafter appear in court where they face a maximum $500 fine and other conditions such as community service and alcohol awareness. Individuals who disregard a PI violation are subject to additional criminal charges and an arrest warrant. Learn more.
  • What is the charge for Public Intoxication in Arlington? A person who appears in public while intoxicated to the extent they endanger themselves or others is subject to a charge for Public Intoxication in Arlington. This offense is a class C misdemeanor punishable by a maximum $500 fine. Learn more.


An effective Public Intoxication defense requires experience and an understanding of intoxication investigations. Public Intoxication is a nuanced legal charge that can impose devastating consequences for students and professionals in Arlington. As such, this charge merits careful representation by a skilled legal advocate. 

  • How much does a PI cost Texas? The maximum fine for a Public Intoxication charge is $500 in Texas. However, there are often additional costs related to alcohol awareness, community service hours, and other court-ordered requirements. Texas judges have ultimate authority on the imposition of fines and costs, which vary across jurisdictions. Learn more.
  • Will a class C misdemeanor show up on my record in Arlington Texas? Yes, class C misdemeanor arrests appear on criminal records in Arlington, even when charges are dismissed. Certain offenses may qualify for an Expunction, a legal process that deletes all records of qualifying cases. Learn more.


The Texas law on Public Intoxication is found in Texas Penal Code section 49.02, which provides: 

A person commits an offense if the person appears in a public place while intoxicated to the degree that the person may endanger the person or another.

This offense is a class C misdemeanor punishable by a maximum $500 fine in Arlington. Learn more.

  • How to fight a Public Intoxication charge in Arlington Texas? The best way to fight a Public Intoxication charge in Arlington is with an experienced and knowledgeable legal defense. Intoxication cases are fact-intensive and require an understanding of investigative science and techniques for an optimum outcome.
  • How long do you stay in jail for Public Intoxication in Arlington Texas? A person can remain in jail for several hours until they regain sobriety on Public Intoxication cases in Arlington. These offenders are arrested from a public safety perspective as they are deemed to pose a danger to themselves or others. Learn more.


Tarrant County prosecutors are aggressive with Public Intoxication cases and do not dismiss these charges casually. Public Intoxication charges are nevertheless dismissed and resolved without conviction everyday in area courts.

  • How to get a Public Intoxication charge dismissed in Arlington? A Public Intoxication charge can be secured by challenging the prosecution evidence, attacking the arresting officer’s probable cause, or through a dynamic mitigation strategy. Every Public Intoxication case presents a unique set of circumstances, which requires a comprehensive and experienced legal analysis.


Trey Porter is a dynamic advocate, nationally recognized for his work in Criminal Defense. He has been voted by his peers as a best lawyer in the field of Criminal and DWI Defense every year since 2015. Recognized by SuperLawyers, Mr. Porter has also been distinguished as a Top 40 Under 40 Criminal Defense Lawyer by the National Trial Lawyers Association. Mr. Porter holds a Superb rating from AVVO, where attorneys are rated based on skillful litigation, client satisfaction, peer endorsements, and positive results. Learn more.


Access to information is important when dealing with a criminal charge. The following entities play an important role in the Arlington criminal justice system. For more information, visit the Tarrant County, Texas website.

  • Tarrant County Justice of the Peace Precinct 3

    Northeast Courthouse

    645 Grapevine Highway

    Suite 220

    Hurst, Texas 76054

    Phone: (817) 581-3625

    Southlake Town Hall

    1400 Main Street, Suite 220

    Southlake, Texas 76092

    Phone: (682) 732-6589

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