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Recent Blog Posts

What Exactly Does "Burglary" Mean in Texas?

 Posted on November 22,2021 in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerThe definition of a “burglary” can vary wildly between states. The general consensus is that burglary is a felony committed when a person breaks into a structure intending to commit another crime inside. Some states are very specific about what type of structure is covered under the burglary statute. Others are particular about what type of crime the offender must be planning to commit once inside. If you have been accused of committing burglary, you may have a lot of questions about why you have been charged with this crime. It is best to speak to a criminal defense attorney who can assess how the Texas burglary statute applies to your case and begin preparing your defense.

What Is the Legal Definition of Burglary in Texas?

In Texas, burglary means unlawfully entering or staying in a building with the intent to commit theft, assault, or any felony. Traditionally, people think of burglaries as being limited to home invasions for the purpose of stealing a family’s things. However, the legal definition of burglary in Texas is not nearly so limited. The building or structure targeted need not be a residential dwelling - retail stores, financial institutions, office buildings, or any other public or private building may count for the purposes of a burglary charge. Even a vehicle like an RV or camper that is designed for use as temporary accommodations.

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False Domestic Violence Accusations - Why They Happen and What to Do

 Posted on November 19,2021 in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerFamily violence accusations are serious. Even if it is charged as a misdemeanor assault family violence rather than a felony, the stigma associated can limit your future career, educational, and social opportunities. False accusations of intimate partner violence are extremely common, however. The reasons people make these kinds of allegations are numerous. Whatever happened, you are now facing a very serious charge - for something you did not do. If this is happening to you, you will need to get in touch with an aggressive criminal defense attorney soon to give you the best chances of clearing your name.

Why Do People Make False Family Violence Claims?

You may have been completely blindsided by your arrest. You know you did nothing wrong, but you are still facing a terrifying prosecution. There is no good reason for filing a false police report alleging an assault that never happened, but common reasons include:

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Are Prostitution Stings Entrapment?

 Posted on November 09,2021 in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerTexas boasts some of the nation’s harshest laws regarding prostitution. As of September 1, 2021, we became the first state to make the crime of purchasing sex from a prostitute a felony. As for prostitution, it can be charged as a felony or as a misdemeanor depending on the circumstances. Either way, a prostitution charge will have a serious impact on your life. Undercover stings where police pose as interested buyers (“johns”) are one of the most common ways people get arrested for prostitution in Texas.

Many people who are caught up in a prostitution sting, whether they are guilty or not, immediately think of entrapment as a possible defense. However, the defense of entrapment requires a very high bar to be met. If you were arrested during a prostitution sting operation, you will want a strong legal advocate to stand between you and the prosecutor. Texas sentencing can be notoriously harsh for sex crimes.

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Does Juvenile Crime Rise on Halloween?

 Posted on October 29,2021 in Juvenile Law

TX defense lawyerHalloween can be tough for teenagers - they are too old to trick-or-treat but too young to join the costumed crowd in the local bar. Every year, there is an uptick in juvenile crime around Halloween as teenagers celebrate the holiday in their own way. Most teen lawbreaking around the fall holiday involves minor crimes, like vandalism, but petty crime can progress into more serious criminal activity.

Unfortunately for parents, there is no worse Halloween night trick than getting a phone call saying their son or daughter is in jail. If your minor child gets arrested for any reason this Halloween season, getting them a lawyer should be your main priority - a skilled attorney can potentially help avoid a criminal record that could follow your teen for life.

What Crimes Do Juveniles Often Commit Around Halloween?

Teen mischief has been a Halloween tradition for a long time. However, some teens go too far and end up committing crimes. It does not help that many costumes include masks, which may lead teens to feel emboldened to break the law. Around Halloween, teens often get arrested for:

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What Are Some More Ways to Defend a Homicide Case?

 Posted on October 22,2021 in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerMurder is perhaps the most serious crime a person can be charged with in Texas. Sentencing can go all the way up to life in prison or even the death penalty. Anyone facing homicide charges needs an experienced and capable criminal defense lawyer to minimize your chances of facing these harsh penalties - whether you are guilty or not.

If you have been accused of murder, finding good representation should be your top priority. A defense attorney will look at all the facts and circumstances surrounding the crime and see if there are any applicable defenses, then decide on a defense strategy. In some cases, a murder charge can be reduced to a lesser crime.

What Is Manslaughter in Texas?

Manslaughter is still a serious crime, but it is not quite as serious as homicide. Rather than a first-degree felony, manslaughter is a second-degree felony and carries less severe penalties. Defense attorneys may sometimes fight to have a murder charge reduced to manslaughter in cases where the defendant caused another person’s death, but did so as a result of recklessness rather than intent to kill. In Texas, there are two types of manslaughter: voluntary and involuntary.

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What Are Some Ways to Defend Against a Homicide Charge?

 Posted on October 08,2021 in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerA murder charge in Texas is very serious indeed. Not only could a person convicted of certain types of homicide face life in prison, but they could be facing the death penalty. The state of Texas is notoriously harsh in murder sentencing. If you have been charged with any form of homicide in Texas, it is critical that you immediately contact an experienced and knowledgeable criminal defense attorney. You may have a defense available, but it will take the commitment of a skilled attorney to put forward your best defense.

An attorney will start by listening to your story and examining all available facts in your case to determine what defense strategy will give you the best chance of avoiding an overly harsh outcome. This multi-part article will touch on some strategies your lawyer may use to defend your murder case.

What Is Justifiable Homicide?

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When Can a Person Be Charged With Continuous Family Violence in Texas?

 Posted on September 23,2021 in Criminal Defense

Wilson County criminal defense lawyerThe term “continuous family violence” brings to mind the idea of ongoing abuse within a family—for example, a husband who routinely hits his wife or child. However, in Texas, continuous family violence just means that there were two or more allegations of family violence within a 12-month period. Because continuous family violence is a third-degree felony, as opposed to misdemeanor family violence, this charge needs to be taken much more seriously. Having a felony on your record can have a major negative impact on your life, so it is important to have an attorney who will defend you aggressively.

What Situations Can Lead to a Continuous Family Violence Charge?

The name of this offense can be misleading. The requisite two incidents of alleged family violence can occur on the same day. The state does not need to prove that family violence was an ongoing problem in the home. Here are some common ways the felony of continuous family violence can be charged:

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Can a Person Under 21 Get a DWI Without Being Intoxicated?

 Posted on September 16,2021 in DWI

Atascosa County DUI defense lawyerIn Texas, a driver under 21 years of age does not need to be legally intoxicated to be charged with—and convicted of—a criminal offense. This may seem counterintuitive, but Texas takes underage drinking seriously out of recognition that a minor’s chances of getting into an accident go up significantly after just one drink. If you are under 21 and you have been charged with an alcohol-related driving offense, the penalties can be severe. A qualified lawyer can help you protect your rights and build a strong defense.

What is the “Legal Limit” for Persons Under 21 in Texas?

Texas applies what is often called the “not a drop” rule, or the “zero tolerance” rule to persons under 21 when it comes to DWI. This means that if you are not yet 21 years of age, you can face criminal charges if you are found to have any amount of alcohol in your system while operating a motor vehicle. Even if you only drank half a beer or a few sips of a cocktail and do not feel intoxicated, blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test results indicating anything above 0.00 may be sufficient to justify an arrest and conviction.

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How Criminal Sentencing Works in Texas, and How a Lawyer Can Help

 Posted on September 10,2021 in Criminal Defense

Floresville criminal defense attorneyIf you have been charged with a criminal offense, the outcome of your case is not a foregone conclusion. Even if you know you are going to plead guilty, or that a conviction is likely, there is still much that a skilled defense attorney can do to improve the outcome. Texas uses a determinate sentencing structure, meaning there are sentencing standards based on the crime. However, the actual sentence you receive can still vary quite a bit depending on the circumstances surrounding the crime and your personal history. Whether you are facing felony or misdemeanor charges, our attorneys are committed to seeking the best possible results for our clients.

What Factors Affect Sentencing?

No matter the offense for which you have been charged, there are a variety of factors a judge or jury can consider before your sentence is decided. Your attorney will be able to present any mitigating circumstances and make an argument for giving you a lighter sentence. In some misdemeanor cases, you may even be able to avoid jail time. However, the prosecutor will have the same opportunity to present evidence of circumstances that may work against you. The judge or jury determining your sentence can consider:

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Soliciting A Prostitute Becomes A Felony

 Posted on August 26,2021 in Criminal Defense

jourdanton criminal defense lawyerBeginning next month, Texas will be the first state in the country to make soliciting a prostitute a felony. The measure, packaged in House Bill 1540, was introduced by state Rep. Senfronia Thompson, a Democrat from Houston, to combat human trafficking and curb “modern-day slavery.” She’s championed the issue for more than a decade. 

The bill received bipartisan support and received unanimous support in committee votes in both the House and Senate. After the Republican governor signed it into law in June, the Texas attorney general Ken Paxton called it “a substantial step towards curbing the demand for commercial sex” and explained that the measure will protect “vulnerable men, women, and children in our communities.” He added, “I commend our legislature for passing laws that fight this inexcusable offense.”

House Bill 1540

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