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Non-Disclosure

The Texas Legislature changed the law with regard to Nondisclosures for offenses committed after September 1st, 2015. In order to get a nondisclosure under the new law, you must fall into one of five categories.   1. Nondisclosure for certain misdemeanors (often referred to as “automatic” nondisclosure) – This is a major change from the old law. Certain nondisclosures are no longer discretionary.… Read more

Self-Defense

Ronald Gasser recently made the news for his recent manslaughter arrest in Louisiana. Gasser is alleged to have shot and killed ex-NFL player Joe McKnight in a road rage dispute. According to authorities, Gasser made a statement that included him being fearful and defending himself. These statements indicate Gasser laying the ground work for a self-defense claim. Self-defense is a common term in our… Read more

Probation Violation

There are two types of probation in Texas for any criminal offense (We will not discuss “shock probation” which is a variation of a straight probation). Community Supervision (often times referred to as “straight probation”) and Deferred Adjudication. They share similar qualities. Both provide for a maximum length of probation of 2 years, in the case of a misdemeanor and 10 years in the case of a felony… Read more

Stop and Frisk

During this political season, you may hear the terms “Stop and Frisk” mentioned by the two candidates for President of the United States. This term as it is used by the candidates refers to the practice implemented by the New York Police department that began in 2002. A Federal judge ruled this practice unconstitutional in 2013. The ruling hinged largely on this practice being a form of “indirect racial… Read more

Why Pleading the 5th Does Not Always Work

Can you go to jail or prison even if the alleged victim of a criminal offense is uncooperative or even unwilling to testify? The answer is yes, in fact, a Houston woman found out you can even go to jail if you are the witness in a criminal offense as well. The State of Texas has a very powerful weapon in its arsenal to “compel” witnesses, alleged victims, and even family members of the accused to… Read more

What Would Happened if Lochte Gate Occurred in Texas

Millions watched the drama unfold in Rio for the 2016 Summer Olympics. We witnessed two of the all-time greats in Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps wrap up their historic Olympic careers. The drama continued to unfold late at night for a few of our American swimmers. Ryan Lochte was at one point seen as a victim of an armed robbery, but that was just not the truth. In our line of work we see half-truths… Read more

Tarrant County Imposes Serious Penalties for Driving While Stoned

The governor of Illinois recently signed a new law that would make possession of small amounts of marijuana a civil matter. The new statute also clearly defines what it means to drive under the influence of marijuana. The law states that drivers who have five nanograms of THC in the blood or ten or more nanograms of THC in their saliva will be deemed intoxicated for purposes of driving under the influence.… Read more

LEGAL Marijuana Delivery Service? Not a Thing

LEGAL Marijuana Delivery Service? Not a Thing Weed on Wheels, a 24-hour dispensary and delivery service based in Colorado,  believes they have come up with a creative way to deliver marijuana to customers in Colorado where possessing marijuana is legal. They intend to deliver marijuana under a “donation” system. But even in Colorado delivery of marijuana can result in criminal prosecution. Only licensed… Read more

Blue Lives Matter: Should Hate Crime Legislation in Texas Include Police Officers?

Blue Lives Matter: Should Hate Crime Legislation in Texas Include Police Officers Should the “Hate Crime” laws currently in place in Texas cover attacks on police officers? Governor Greg Abbott joins other politicians from Colorado to New Jersey saying YES. Governor Abbott wants the targeted killing and assaults of police officers to be considered a “hate crime” under Texas State law. What is the… Read more

Texas Castle Doctrine and Stand Your Ground Law

The Florida legislation is considering a shift in how a self-defense claim plays out in a courtroom; more commonly known as the “Stand Your Ground” law. Under the current law in Florida, a Defendant bears the burden in proving to the court immunity from prosecution under this provision. SB344 will shift the burden to the prosecution to prove a person is not entitled to immunity under the “Stand Your… Read more