Dallas Criminal Law Blog

Juvenile law: Can minors face murder charges in Texas?

When children are accused of committing crimes, they can face charges and penalties, sometimes even time behind bars. The law recognizes the difference between charges for juveniles and charges against people age 18 and older, but in some juvenile law cases, a child can be charged as an adult. In a recent case in Texas, prosecutors announced the intention to charge a minor as an adult in a murder case.

The girl is facing murder charges after a physical altercation resulted in the death of an 18-year-old. Because she is being tried as an adult, she will face more serious charges and steeper penalties. A judge will hold a hearing to consider the prosecution's intent to charge her as an adult. The young defendant has the right to legal counsel to defend her interests at the hearing and at every step of the process.

Drug crimes defense still necessary for marijuana charges

Criminal charges related to marijuana possession can lead to serious penalties under Texas state law. Recently, however, some lawmakers in the state House of Representatives are considering bills that could lessen some of the penalties associated with these offenses. It is not clear whether this proposal will pass in the Senate, and people facing marijuana charges would be wise to still pursue developing a strong defense strategy regarding any formal accusations of drug crimes.

Many people believe that Texas laws are too harsh against those who possess small amounts of marijuana. Certain groups who have been seeking reform of the state's drug laws believe that criminalizing marijuana possession is not a positive solution, leading to overcrowding in jails and other issues. There are lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle who support revisiting the state's drug laws.

Fighting back against junk science in the courtroom

We’ve all seen television shows like “CSI,” which demonstrate that forensic science is the silver bullet in criminal investigation. Lab technicians and on-site investigators are the heroes who notice details that others might miss, using cutting-edge tests and computer analysis. These shows are so entertaining that most Americans need no convincing that forensic testing is irrefutable.

Unfortunately, this couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, much of forensic “science” cannot reasonably be called science at all. And a blind faith in many of these unscientific tests has led to countless wrongful convictions. In some cases, the wrongfully convicted were even sentenced to death.

4 reasons to appeal your criminal conviction

Few things in life are scarier than facing a prison sentence. After all, society intends for incarceration to be punishment for bad conduct. Even worse, unless you have a law degree, the Texas court system can seem downright confusing. Still, if a judge or jury has convicted you of a crime, you may want to appeal your conviction

Unfortunately, you cannot file a criminal appeal simply because you do not like the outcome of your case. On the contrary, you must have a legally valid reason to ask a higher court to overturn your conviction. Generally, Texas law allows appeals in the following four situations: 

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