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Texas officer arrested for assault may focus on criminal defense

A grand jury recently handed down an indictment for a Texas officer accused of using excessive force with a man during an arrest. Charged with assault, he chose to resign from his position during an internal investigation, perhaps in part to focus on his upcoming criminal defense. There is also a video that apparently depicts the attack, which included another officer who was ultimately not charged.

The alleged victim was asleep at a train station when the incident took place. The man claims that he initially thought the officer drew his gun, although no gun was ever actually used during the altercation. Instead, the officer actually pulled out his baton. The victim further claimed that he was repeatedly hit without reason.

Afterward, the man was arrested and booked on charges of criminal trespassing and resisting arrest, although both of those allegations were later dismissed for reasons that are not entirely clear. The officer, in turn, was indicted by a grand jury; however, the jury claimed that not enough evidence existed to charge the other officer who was with him at the time. The officer charged could potentially have to spend a year behind bars if convicted.

Most charges, even those that are seemingly simple, can have serious consequences. In this case, there could also be a $4,000 fine in addition to jail time. Perhaps the most profound consequences are those that accompany a criminal record, as they can preclude individuals from certain educational or employment opportunities. With this knowledge, most defendants in Texas hope to minimize these consequences by taking an early and proactive approach to their criminal defense.

Source: abc13.com, "Former METRO police officer charged with assault of man at train station", Jarius Warren, Sept. 28, 2016

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