If the State of Texas has legal claims against you, alleging you committed a criminal offense, the decision of whether or not to hire an attorney may greatly impact your future. It’s best to consult an experienced attorney to obtain information about your case and to protect your legal rights.
We are committed to successfully defending, many who were wrongfully accused. From start to finish, our only concern is your best interest. In this country, you are innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt! We will do our best to protect you. Additionally, our firm may post bonds for those we will represent in a criminal case.
This is a difficult time for you and your family, but you must remember to protect your rights with quality legal representation. We defend our clients from felonies and misdemeanors.
If the State of Texas has a legal claim against you — one that accuses you of committing a criminal offense — your decision to hire an attorney can impact your future. Being convicted of a criminal offense can have a huge impact on your life, which can affect your ability to find employment. Not to mention, the time that you can spend in jail or prison. You need to find an experienced criminal defense attorney in Corpus Christi for more information about your case, which can put you in a better position to protect your legal rights.
Here at Gale Law Group, we can help in the defense of the following criminal defense cases:
- Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) — If you have accused of a DWI offense, you could be faced with huge fines, time in jail, as well as the suspension of your driver’s license.
- Drug Distribution — The Texas Controlled Substances Act prohibits the distribution of certain drugs, and you could be found guilty if the prosecution is able to prove that you had knowingly and intentionally delivered marijuana or any other controlled substance.
- Drug Manufacturing — The manufacture or cultivation of an illegal drug is also considered to be a violation of the Texas Controlled Substances Act if it falls within any of the four groups that have been listed.
- Drug Possession — The Texas Controlled Substances Act makes it unlawful to possess certain drugs, which have been classified as illicit or controlled.
- Identity Theft — Identity theft involves the access of someone’s personal information for the purpose of committing fraud, which is a serious crime.
- Money Laundering — Criminals have to take large amounts of money that they have earned illegally and make it look like it came from a legitimate source. Any money that’s earned from criminal activity is considered “dirty,” and money laundering is seen as a way of “washing” it to make it look clean.
- Forgery — The criminal definition of forgery involves the making of false documents, modifying one that already exists, or using a signature that isn’t your own. These activities are used for deceitful purposes, and many people who are charged with these crimes are also charged with fraud.
- Fraud — Fraud is considered to be any action that’s meant to deceive someone, usually for the purpose of gaining a monetary or personal advantage. Many people fall victim to these types of crimes, and it always involves some sort of misrepresentation or deceitful action.
- Family Violence — Family violence is considered to be any use of force that causes injury to someone else, places someone at risk of bodily harm, or causes physical contact that may be considered offensive or provocative. If you have been the victim of domestic violence, go to a safe location and call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7223.
- Sex Crimes — Being accused of a sex crime can seriously impact your life. Not only can it damage your reputation, but it can also ruin your career and even your relationships.
- Homicide — According to the State of Texas, homicide refers to any action that intentionally and knowingly causes the death of someone else.
- Probation Revocations — If you have your probation revoked, you may have to serve the rest of your sentence. And if you have been arrested for another crime, you could face penalties for both crimes.
- Theft — Theft is any action that involves the taking of someone’s property without his or her consent, and it can refer to any number of crimes with different levels of severity.
- Robbery — Robbery is often considered to be the theft or larceny of property or money through the use of physical force of fear tactic. If it involves the use of a deadly weapon and causes injury to the victim, it could be considered “armed” or “aggravated.”
- Burglary — Burglary usually involves the unauthorized entry into a building or structure with the plan to commit a crime.
If you have been accused of any of these crimes, be sure to contact Gale Law Group.
Criminal defense laws are meant to protect people who have been accused of a crime. Law enforcement agencies and government prosecutors have a lot of resources at their disposal. And without protection, there would be huge imbalance in the criminal justice system because it would be in the government’s favor. The fair treatment of people who have been accused of criminal activity depends as much on the skill or their attorney as it does on the legal protections that are in the current system.
Protections Guaranteed Under Criminal Defense Law
The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution (which has been made applicable to all states with the 14th Amendment) prevents the police from performing any unreasonable searches and seizures as a way to get evidence. If they do, attorneys will ask the court to not use it if the case goes to trial. There are, of course, more protections under criminal defense law. Anyone who has been tried and acquitted of a crime can’t be charged again, which is part of the “double jeopardy” provision of the Fifth Amendment.
The Sixth Amendment also guarantees the right to a public trial for everyone who has been accused of a crime. In many cases, they’re guaranteed the right to a trial by a jury. It also gives them the right to confront any adverse witnesses and to use the court’s power to subpoena so they can guarantee the appearance of a witness that can work in their favor.
Most criminal cases never go to trial, because the defendant and prosecuting attorney will make a settlement agreement (also known as a “plea bargain”) in exchange for a sentence that isn’t as harsh. But, if your case does go to trial, one of the keys to the success of your defense is to convince the jury why you have been falsely accused. Your attorney will try to create a narrative that will resonate with the members of the jury, and he or she will reinforce any pre-existing beliefs that they may have — that is, if they work in your favor. Developing a solid theory that proves your innocence and presenting it effectively is the goal of every criminal defense lawyer.
Felonies & Misdemeanors
Texas crimes can be classified as either misdemeanors or felonies, and they’re grouped into several categories with their own set of penalties. Misdemeanors can be seen as either Class A, B, or C; while felonies can be seen as first, second, or third degree. Because felonies are more serious crimes, the penalties will be harsher. Misdemeanors are less serious, so they’ll come with shorter sentences (usually in a county or state jail). Some felonies are classified as state-jail, which will also come with shorter sentences. And there are many felony crimes that can result in hefty fines and up to life in prison.
Types of Misdemeanor Crimes in the State of Texas
Misdemeanors are considered to be less serious crimes that don’t involve violence or loss of property, so they’ll come with lighter sentences that can include jail times and even fines. While they’re classified as “lesser” crimes, misdemeanor charges should be taken seriously. A conviction will result in a criminal record, which can have long-term repercussions on your ability to find employment or achieve your goals. You can also do time in prison if you have been convicted.
The State of Texas puts misdemeanor offenses into three separate classes, which include:
- Class A Misdemeanors — These are the most serious of all the misdemeanor offenses. Being convicted of a Class A misdemeanor can carry a sentence of up to one year in a county jail and a fine of up to $4,000.
- Class B Misdemeanors — These types of crimes can have a sentence of up to 180 days in a county jail and a fine of up to $2,000.
- Class C Misdemeanors — These are least serious of the three classes, and it usually doesn’t involve jail time. However, you can pay a fine of up to $500.
There are certain things that are taken into consideration, which can affect the type of sentencing you’ll receive. Repeat offenses of a Class A misdemeanor require a minimum sentence of 90 days in a county jail, while repeat offenses of a Class B misdemeanor require a minimum sentence of 30 days in a county jail. If a Class A misdemeanor offense involve the use of drugs or any other controlled substance, it will require a minimum sentence of 180 days in a county jail. The same is true for a Class A misdemeanor offense that was motivated by prejudice or any other form of bias.
Felony Classifications in the State of Texas
Felony crimes can carry a punishment that must involve time in a state prison or jail, and they’re grouped into the following classifications:
- Capital Felonies — These crimes are punishable by death or life in prison without the possibility for parole.
- First-Degree Felonies — Being convicted by these types of crimes can result in a prison sentence of five years to life, as well as a fine of up to $10,000.
- Second-Degree Felonies — These crimes can carry a sentence of two to twenty years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Third-Degree Felonies — These types of crimes can result in a sentence of two to ten years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- State-Jail Felonies — These are the least serious of all the felony crimes, and they can carry a sentence of 180 days to two years in a state jail with a fine of up to $10,000.
If you want more information about the types of felony or misdemeanor crimes and how we can help you in the defense of your case, get in touch with Gale Law Group today!
Possible Outcomes Throughout the Criminal Defense Process
Facing criminal charges can be enough to intimidate, frighten, and even confuse you because a criminal case can often involve a lot of legal issues with which you may not be familiar. That’s why it’s always a good idea to seek legal advice if you have been charged with a crime. Every case is different and may come with consequences that can change your life.
No matter what you’re pleading, getting a criminal defense attorney in Corpus Christi is critical if you want to protect your rights. Representing yourself in court is never a good idea, because the prosecution will always try to get the harshest possible penalty. A qualified attorney can help you get a lighter sentence, as well as to minimize or even eliminate your charges (if possible).
After you have been arrested, you shouldn’t speak to any police officer until you have hired an attorney. You’re not required to give a statement to a police officer, but many people don’t realize it. You have the right to remain silent, and you have the right to an attorney. If you want to get the best possible outcome for your case, you should exercise those rights as soon as possible. Police officers will try to use anything you say against you in court, which can determine the outcome of your case.
If you have been charged with a felony, it would be punishable by one or more years in prison. But, for a misdemeanor, you won’t have a sentence for longer than one year. According to the criminal justice system, misdemeanor crimes are often considered less serious than felonies. But, no matter what type of charges you’re facing, you need to hire a criminal defense attorney in Texas if you want your rights to be protected.
Regardless of whether you have been arrested or brought into custody, you will have to make your first court appearance (which is called an “arraignment”). This is when you’ll be formally presented with the charges against you and will be asked how you plead to them, which can include the following:
- Not guilty
- No contest
- Mute plea
In Texas, the arraignment is when the judge will determine whether you should be kept in custody or released until your trial. It’s also when the judge will determine your bail amount. If you’re facing charges and are looking for one of the best criminal defense lawyers in Corpus Christi, be sure get to get in touch with Gale Law Group.
Why Use a Criminal Defense Attorney
Criminal defense attorneys understand all the constitutional protections that are given to their clients, and they know how to use them to their advantage. Every single criminal prosecution is based on the evidence that has been gathered by the government, which can include any of the following:
- Any physical items that have been used as evidence.
- Any filed statements that have been made by witnesses.
- Any recorded confessions from the defendant or involved party.
- The results of any drug and alcohol tests that have been performed.
There can be any number of items or records that may be used as evidence, so feel free to speak to someone at Gale Law Group for more information. We have years of experience defending criminal cases. If you have been accused of a crime and need someone who can help you in court, get in touch with us today!