A man with 10 arrests for driving while intoxicated was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday after his seventh DWI conviction.
James Eric Nachlinger, 48, of Scurry County in West Texas pleaded guilty to a DWI charge from July and elected to have state District Judge Craig Towson assess his sentence, said Jeff Swain, Parker County assistant district attorney.
Nachlinger was previously sentenced to prison for four other felony charges and the case was handled under Texas’ habitual-offender law, said Swain, who prosecuted Nachlinger’s case.
Nachlinger was pulled over by a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper for driving erratically July 28 while traveling on Interstate 20 in western Parker County, Swain said. A blood sample showed he had a blood alcohol content of more than three times the legal limit, Swain said.
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After being sentenced to a total of 66 years in prison, Nachlinger told authorities that he still drinks “because he likes it,” Swain said.
According to Swain, while reading Nachlinger’s sentence, Towson told him that given his past history and his failure to stop drinking, “Now, I have to protect the public from you.”