Christopher Stanford, a 50-year-old man from Texas, has been handed a life sentence after his ninth conviction for driving while intoxicated (DWI). Stanford opted for a jury to decide his sentence following his guilty plea to the latest DWI charge. His eight previous DWI convictions spanned four other counties within the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, resulting in four prison sentences.
The jury deemed Stanford a habitual offender, significantly influencing their decision to impose a life sentence. Parker County District Attorney Jeff Swain justified the sentence, stating that Stanford would continue to pose a danger to communities if not incarcerated. Stanford's most recent offence involved running a red light and causing a traffic accident with minor injuries to a family before attempting to flee the scene.
Found hiding in vegetation, Stanford demonstrated difficulty standing and aggressive behaviour, including headbutting an emergency worker. He refused a roadside sobriety test but consented to a blood test after his arrest, revealing an alcohol concentration of 0.267, over three times Texas' legal limit of 0.08. The jury took 90 minutes to decide on a life sentence after Stanford testified that he was "very unlucky," which the Assistant District Attorney regarded as a lack of personal insight and concern for others' safety on the roads.
Stanford will be eligible for parole once his time served and good time credit reaches 15 years. The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles will have the authority to release him from prison.