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San Antonio Criminal Defense Law Blog

We understand the unique needs of a juvenile criminal defense

For minors who have the rest of their lives rich with educational and career opportunities ahead of them, an arrest on criminal charges could change everything. Texas parents and children facing these issues may be unsure of what kind of criminal defense minors can benefit from the most. This confusion is understandable, and the answer can heavily depend on whether a charge is a misdemeanor or felony, and if the child is being charged as a minor or an adult.

Although most individuals under the age of the 18 are handled in the juvenile court system, there are exceptions in which a minor may be tried as an adult. This typically does not occur for minor offenses, but it is common when a minor has been accused of an especially violent crime. In such instances, the consequences of a conviction would be the same as an adult offender. 

Accused of sexual assault, deputy faces charges

A local Texas deputy is one of at least seven individuals who have been accused of official oppression. Though perhaps not a charge with which all are familiar, it is a charge related to the use of one's official status to oppress another person. Alleged incidents leading up to the most recent official oppression charge include at least one possible instance of sexual assault.

The deputy, who is no longer employed by the sheriff's office, faces charges that stem from when he was still on the job. In addition to the official oppression charge, he has also been charged with bribery, although details of the incident leading to that charge are unclear. The former deputy is also suspected of offering to help a woman with her ongoing case if she agreed to perform certain sexual activities. These allegations also contributed to the county's decision to terminate his employment. 

6 people from Texas facing federal crime charges

Texas police recently arrested six individuals believed to be responsible for a series of home invasions. Since their arrest, all six have been indicted on federal crime charges. The charges vary from person to person and include assault with a dangerous weapon as well as racketeering conspiracy.

The federal indictment includes a claim that the six-member group referred to themselves as the Castro Enterprise. The group allegedly had a strong suspicion that certain households in the North Texas area stored their money at home rather than in banks. Most of the targeted households were of Asian and Indian descent.

Felony charge warrant included sheriff, other county employees

Four Texas men are behind bars following arrests on allegations of government document tampering. One of those arrested was a local sheriff, and the other three were all employed by the county sheriff's office. Tampering with documents is considered a felony charge, as is breaching computer security, which is the second charge on which they were arrested. 

The accusations come from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement, which launched the investigation following information that professional misconduct might have occurred. TCOLE's affidavit alleges that the sheriff convinced someone else to take an important exam on his behalf. He supposedly also had another individual report that she had witnessed an inmate at a bar instead of in jail where he or she was supposed to be.

Texas authorities charge teacher with sex offenses

Crimes in which minors are the victims are taken seriously by Texas authorities, and, in some instances, the news of a suspected incident may spread quickly throughout a community. While the extra care that police appear to give to crimes against minors is most likely a comfort for many who are following a story, it can sometimes create an unfair presumption of guilt against the accused. A local case that involves a teacher now charged with sex offenses is a reminder of the importance of the presumption of innocence.

The teacher has been accused of engaging in an inappropriate relationship with a 15-year-old student in April 2014. At the time, the teacher was 23 years old. These accusations came to light after a resource officer at the school somehow received information about the alleged relationship. In turn, the proper authorities were notified, and an arrest warrant was issued. 

Football player at Texas AM suspended re misdemeanor charge

A football player at Texas A&M was recently suspended from participating in team practices or games, but it wasn't for the theft citation that he was issued. Instead, the charge that garnered him the suspension was for failing to identify himself to an officer. Although the charge could have been a felony, authorities decided that only a misdemeanor charge was sufficient.

The initial incident that led to the charge occurred at Wal-Mart. One of the employees at the store believed that he saw the football player take a bottle of lotion without paying for it. He subsequently notified the police. The bottle of lotion in question retailed for less than $15, and the responding officer determined that issuing him a citation for a theft of less than $50 was the appropriate course of action. However, when asked his name for the citation, authorities claim that the man gave his brother's name rather than his own.

DWI charges not always based on legal stops

A drunk driving conviction has the power to permanently alter the course of a person's future. Unfortunately, it may sometimes appear that the Texas justice system treats those accused of a DWI as guilty before even going to court. It is imperative that defendants are still treated justly under the full breadth of the law.

While we understand that getting behind the wheel while intoxicated is a serious issue, it is entirely possible for overzealous law enforcement to act out of line when trying to prevent this from occurring. Some police officers pull drivers over without any reason or suspicion to do so, which is illegal. Other than at a DUI checkpoint, officers must have a reasonable suspicion that a driver may have broken a law before initiating a traffic stop.

Texas men arrested for possession with intent to distribute

Federal authorities arrested two Texas men following an investigation of an alleged drug ring that helped move drugs across the southern border and into the United States. They have since been accused of possession with intent to distribute as well as conspiring to launder money. As the investigation that led to their arrest was conducted by both the IRS and DEA, the charges that they face are federal.

Although apparently no longer active in smuggling, authorities believe that these Texas men -- both 47 years old -- may have played an important role in the drug ring in question from 2011 to 2013. It is suspected that, during this period, they may have entered Mexico to retrieve marijuana. They then allegedly transported the marijuana into Texas to be sold.

Man admits starting fire, now facing felony charge

The circumstances surrounding a fire that destroyed part of a Texas Islamic community center are in question following the arrest of a suspected arsonist. Charged with arson -- a felony charge -- the man claims that the out-of-control blaze was far from intentional. The man's confession helped ease worries some had who feared the fire was a hate crime.

The blaze broke out on Feb. 13, causing damage to a warehouse at the community center. At the time it was used for storing various supplies, such as books and furniture that were not in use, and all of these items were presumably destroyed, along with the warehouse. No one was injured, and the adjoining school and mosque were not damaged by the fire.

Attempt to pay property tax ends in state crime charges

A Texas man was arrested during the course of attempting to pay off his property tax. He is facing multiple state crime charges, including resisting arrest for allegedly pulling away from the arresting officer. However, the circumstances surrounding his arrest may leave some feeling confused about the charges.

The man reported to his local county courthouse in order to pay the $600 that he still owed for property taxes. According to officials, he only brought dollar bills to pay off his debt. Authorities further claimed that each dollar was folded and that workers somehow had to spend six minutes to simply unfold a single bill.