Part of the reason I think is because the jurors are thinking "There but for the grace of God go I"; because most folks have been intoxicated at least once while driving.
The second reason? Judges don't want to be seen as "soft".
Drunken drivers who kill or maim on San Antonio roads received lighter sentences from juries than those who were sentenced by judges in the past year.
In the past six intoxication manslaughter or assault trials, juries gave three of the defendants probation and three prison terms.
Judges, on the other hand, meted out or approved prison sentences for nine out of 10 defendants who over the past year chose to forgo a jury trial.