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San Antonio Criminal Defense Law Blog

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Although apparently no longer active in smuggling, authorities believe that these Texas men -- both 47 years old -- may have played an important role in the drug ring in question from 2011 to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.

Federal crime charges need the right kind of representation

The assumption that most criminal charges are about on par with one another may not be an uncommon idea in Texas, but it is untrue. For instance, consequences vary between misdemeanors and felonies. Moreover, how federal crime charges are handled differs greatly from how state charges are managed. Unfortunately, not everyone is aware of what a serious impact the distinction between state and federal charges can make.

There may be some confusion about what prompts a charge at the federal level, which is understandable. Typically, alleged crimes that violate the federal government's penal code -- also known as Title 18 of the U.S. Code -- may result in federal charges. Common examples that some people may already be familiar with include mail fraud, interstate crimes, robbing a bank or smuggling a controlled substance into the country.

Jockey Roman Chapa facing felony charge after Texas race

Accusations of cheating in horse racing are not taken lightly by the Texas Racing Commission, and some of the most recent allegations of unsportsmanlike conduct have actually led to legal action in the state. Roman Eric Chapa, the jockey at the center of the investigation, has denied accusations that arose shortly after he won a $50,000 race. Despite his objections, he now faces a felony charge.

Suspicions of possible misconduct were raised by a photograph that was snapped just before Chapa and his horse, Quiet Acceleration, crossed the finish line at Sam Houston Race Park. The picture appears to show a small object partially concealed by the man's hand. Some believe that the small object is actually a device that is designed to administer electric shocks to the animal, which apparently causes the horse to run faster.

Female shopper says she was victim of sexual assault at Big Lots

A shopper at the popular Big Lots store claimed that a man touched her inappropriately before she followed him outside to confront him. Using her cell phone, she recorded the man as she accused him of sexual assault. Allegedly shown on the video is the man threatening the woman if she did not stop recording him. Texas police were subsequently notified, and they arrested the man a short while later.

The incident apparently began when the woman felt what she first believed to be an accidental brush against her backside. She also reported that the man who she believed accidentally touched her began to mutter to himself, which unnerved her. She then began to move away from the back of the store where she had previously been shopping.

Texas men face drug charges for alleged oxycodone distribution

A multi-agency investigation resulted in the arrest of two Texas men on multiple charges. Accused of illegally distributing prescription medications, they now face drug charges in Texas, although police also believe that the pair mailed some of the medication to other states. In addition to their charges for allegedly distributing controlled substances, one of the men also faces charges for money laundering, while the other has been accused of committing health care fraud. 

The men involved both work in fields related to health care. As a doctor, one of the two would supposedly receive upward of $240 for office visits, during which he would write a prescription for either hydrocodone or oxycodone. After the first in-office visit, the doctor is accused of telling his patients that they could receive additional prescriptions every 30 days without showing up, but they would still need to send in money for a visit.

Texas driver arrested on suspicion of drunk driving for 8th time

According to Texas state law, following at least two prior convictions for DWI, a third arrest on the suspicion of drunk driving means that driver will be dealing with felony charges. Facing a felony drunk driving charge can be much more overwhelming than dealing with a misdemeanor charge, as the consequences can be much steeper. One driver is now dealing with this serious charge for what is apparently not the first time.

A man who previously served four years behind bars for his seventh conviction for a DWI was arrested for allegedly being intoxicated behind the wheel of his vehicle. In Nov. 2014, the man purportedly failed to take note of an upcoming red light and crashed into the back of a vehicle that was already stopped. A third vehicle was also struck.

Man may not face state crime charges for shooting incident

Texas police are currently conducting an investigation into the shooting death of a man outside of a stranger's home. The man who allegedly shot him is not currently facing any state crime charges for the act, although that may change following the conclusion of the investigation. Ultimately, that decision will be left to a grand jury's discretion.

A homeowner called 911 around 4 a.m. to report that an individual was attempting to enter his property. He said that, at first, the supposed trespasser rang the doorbell multiple times and then repeatedly knocked, demanding to be let in. Apparently worried for the safety of his wife and daughter, who were home at the time of the incident, the homeowner retrieved his gun and went outside. 

Man behind bars on state crime charges granted new trial

A conviction can understandably feel like the final stop on a dead end road. What some in Texas may not know is that there is an appeals process that can help a defendant convicted on state crime charges seek a new trial. One man was recently granted the right to a new trial by the Texas court of appeals. 

In 2007, the state expanded the Castle Doctrine -- also known as the stand your ground law -- to include the right to use necessary deadly force while defending oneself. Several years later in Feb. 2012, two men were locked into an argument concerning how loud one of the men was playing his music. That argument escalated, prompting the defendant to dial 911. He told the dispatcher that he was afraid for his life and believed that he was going to be killed before shooting the other man.