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Denton Texas Criminal Defense Legal Blog

When a police mistake leads to criminal charges

You have certain unalienable rights. That's something every Texan learns in civics class. And even if you happened to miss that day, you likely know the words of the Miranda warning because of television. You have the right to remain silent and refuse to answer police questions without an attorney present.

A right to be free of government intrusion is granted by the Constitution, as well. And while that right is not absolute, authorities are required to be careful when infringing on it. Overstepping the bounds happens more often than most people know. Sometimes it happens on purpose. Sometimes it occurs because officers are blind to crossing the line. Regardless, anyone facing criminal charges as a result needs strong legal advocacy in addressing the potential consequences.

Marijuana legalization brings warnings about impaired driving

According to safety officials from several U.S. transportation agencies, regulators should do more to mitigate the dangers of more permissive drug use in many states throughout the country. While marijuana remains illegal in Texas, officials fear that greater use of pot in places like California and Colorado will increase incidents of impaired driving. The National Transportation Safety Board is advocating that police use devices to test drug impairment.

These NTSB recommendations were sparked by an investigation of a crash in rural Texas that killed 13. The fatal accident was caused by a pickup truck driver who was intoxicated with marijuana and some prescription drugs. Video evidence clearly showed that the driver was swerving onto the shoulder and over the center divider for 15 minutes before the crash. Agents believe there was likely ample opportunity to pull over this truck before the accident happened.

How Texas punishes DWI offenses

The state of Texas has severe penalties for those the courts convict of driving while intoxicated. These vary depending on a range of factors, including whether or not it is your first offense, as well as the amount of alcohol in your system at the time of arrest.

It is crucial for you to understand the consequences that come with a DWI conviction, as knowing what you stand to lose can help underscore the importance of building a strong and strategic DWI defense.

An overview of DWI law in Texas

Texas motorists who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol could be charged with DWI. There may also be a penalty for those who fail to submit to a breath test when asked by authorities to take one. The type of penalties a person may face for a DWI conviction depend on a person's prior record and circumstances specific to the case. For instance, a charge may be more serious if a child is in the car with an impaired driver.

In such a scenario, an individual could spend up to two years in state prison. The prison time would be in addition to a 180-day license suspension and a $10,000 fine. Enhanced penalties may also apply if a driver has a blood alcohol content of .15 percent or higher. Drivers under the age of 21 may be charged with a DWI if they have a BAC of .02 or higher.

Report finds growth in charges for marijuana possession

Marijuana has been legalized in a number of states, although Texas is not one of them. However, a report from the FBI that was released on Sept. 24 found an increase in the number of nationwide incidents in which people were taken into custody for marijuana possession.

According to the report, there were 659,700 incidents of people taken into custody on marijuana charges in 2017. The number in 2016 was 653,249. A closer breakdown shows that 60,418 of those incidents were for sales and distribution in 2017 compared to 65,734 in 2016. Activists for legalization of the drug said that law enforcement needed to change its priorities given the fact that marijuana is now legal in a growing number of states. The opioid epidemic was cited as an example of a drug problem law enforcement should be focusing on instead.

Police seize marijuana and THC vapes worth $33,000

Police in Texas have reported that drugs with a street value of more than $33,000 were seized during the search of a Sugar Land residence on the morning of Sept. 7. The search was conducted by officers assigned to the Fort Bend County Narcotics Task Force during an investigation into the distribution and sale of THC extracts and marijuana in the area.

According to local media accounts, deputies discovered almost seven pounds of marijuana and 198 vaporizing cartridges containing THC extract in the Sugarbridge Trail home. THC is the cannabinoid that gives marijuana its psychoactive properties. Deputies say that they also found more than $7,000 in cash and several Xanax pills during the search. A Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office representative said that the investigation that led to the search of the house was one of several undercover operations conducted in recent months aimed at identifying and apprehending individuals involved in the local drug trade.

Is marijuana possession a felony in Texas?

People may have many fears when they are accused of marijuana possession here in Texas. For one, they may fear that they will face a felony charge.

Are charges of marijuana possession always at the felony level here in Texas? The answer is no. They are sometimes felony charges and they are sometimes misdemeanor charges. Generally, the main deciding factor on this front is how much marijuana a person is accused of having possessed.

Understanding your post-arrest responsibilities in Texas

If police in Texas arrested you and charged you with a crime, you now have a path that you must follow through the state's criminal justice system. Although every criminal case is different, there is a general procedure that criminal charges follow.

You need to understand your rights and responsibilities following your arrest in Texas. If you neglect any of your legal duties after your arrest, or if you are not aware of your rights under the law, you could endure serious consequences in the future.

Testimonials

  1. When I got myself into a big mess, Mr. Ross helped me get an amazing deal and now only a few years later I have my life back. He's very professional and gets to know his clients because he genuinely cares. And his staff keep the same level of professionalism. Very highly recommend!

  2. John "Tony" Ross Jr. is hands down the go to man if you need a juvenile defense attorney. He is professional but yet treats you like a friend. Tony really listened to our concerns. He worked hard to get us just about everything we could have hoped for and the charges significantly lessened. He went above and beyond to make sure my family member was treated fairly and with dignity. If you have a child or grandchild in trouble with the law, don't shop around. Call John "Tony" Ross Jr.

  3. Hands down the best attorney in this area! Tony went above and far beyond what we could have expected. If you are in need of legal assistance, he is definitely the way to go.

  4. Tony Ross is excellent, and was a very educated expert in having my case examined and reviewed to get it downgraded...the charge downgraded from a DWI to an obstruction of a highway passage because of the talented Mr. Anthony "Tony" Ross, and Ross Law Offices, P.C.! I was very pleased to not have the original charge of a DWI on record and satisfied of the result of no DWI. Would highly recommend Ross Law Offices, P.C.! Good luck, but who needs luck with Tony Ross!

  5. Mr. Tony Ross is an amazing attorney. My son made some poor choices and needed legal assistance. Mr. Ross was able to help us keep him out of jail and the charges off his record. We are forever grateful that our son has a second chance!

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