Top Rated Dallas Criminal Defense Attorney
Answers To Frequently Asked Questions About Criminal Charges
Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney
Located in Dallas, Texas, Tim Clancy Attorney at Law believe that by conducting an in-depth investigation and analysis of the facts and defenses of every client’s case, we can achieve the best results possible. The criminal defense lawyers and associates at our law office are respected former judges and prosecutors who are knowledgeable in the law and personally committed to each client.
Tim Clancy is an ethical, respected and aggressive Dallas criminal lawyer who represent clients in state and federal criminal courts in felony, misdemeanor and juvenile matters.
Felonies, Federal Crimes, DWIs, Misdemeanors, and Juvenile Chargers
Texas State Felonies
In Texas, felonies fall under five categories: capital, class I, II, and III, and state jail felonies. A crime will fall under one of these categories depending on the circumstances, and will be charged in accordance with the severity of the crime committed as well as the history of the convicted person.
Capital felonies are the most severe type of punishment. Punishment for a capital felony will either be life in prison without parole or the death penalty. The jury will only give the death penalty if the prosecutor seeks it; otherwise, the minimum punishment will be life without parole. An example of a capital felony is murder. Texas capital felony Sec. 12.31
Class I Felonies
First degree felonies are punishable by life in jail or no less than five and no more than 99 years in prison. On top of this sentencing, the convicted may be subject to pay a fine not exceeding $10,000. An example of a class I felony is sexual assault against a child. Texas class I felony Sec. 12.32.
Class II Felonies
Second degree felonies are punishable by no fewer than two and no more than 20 years in prison. Like first degree felonies, a second degree felony can be punishable by up to $10,000 on top of prison time. An example of a class II felony is causing severe injury to a member of the family. Texas class II felony Sec. 12.33.
Class III Felonies
Third degree felonies are punishable by no less than two years and no more than 10 years in state prison. The maximum fine is also $10,000. An example of a class III felony is possession of 50 or more pounds of marijuana. Texas class III felony Sec. 12.34.
State Jail Felony
A state jail felony is punishable by no fewer than 180 days and no more than two years, with a maximum fine of $10,000. State jail felonies fall into a grey area where if a lawmaker failed to place a particular type of felony in a specific classification. However, if the convicted person had previously committed a felony or used a deadly weapon during the crime, the judge may punish the convicted person with a third degree felony charge as opposed to a state jail felony charge. An example of a state jail felony is theft of livestock up to $20,000. Texas state jail felony Sec. 12.35.
We defend clients that have been charged with the following state felonies:
- Aggravated sexual assault;
- Online solicitation of a minor;
- Child pornography;
- Computer crimes and hacking; and
- Indecency with a child
Overlap Between Federal Crimes Committed in the State of Texas
There is sometimes an overlap between state and federal crimes when an offense is committed. In this case, parties must choose whether they want to try the case in state or federal court . In the scenario that only federal laws are broken, the case will be tried in federal court. However, most criminal cases involve state offenses, and are tried in state court. Examples of federal crimes are cases in which the United States is considered a party, when the U.S. constitution has been violated, over bankruptcy, over copyright, when patents have been violated, when maritime law comes into play, and when there is a dispute between citizens of different state over the sum of $75,000 or more.
An example of a federal crime is child pornography. Under the federal statute 8 USC § 2260(a); § 2G2.1, child pornography is defined as the use of a minor in the production of sexually explicit depictions of a minor for importation into the United States. The first offense is a minimum of 15 years in prison. If the offender has a prior conviction of child sex abuse or child pornography, the minimum is 25 years. If the offender has two or more convictions of chile sex abuse or child pornography, the minimum is 35 years in prison. And finally, if death results from the child pornography, the minimum is 30 years.
We Defend Clients That Have Been Charged With the Following Federal Felonies:
- Mail fraud;
- Wire fraud;
- Child pornography;
- Aggravated identity theft;
- Medicare fraud; and
- Medicaid fraud
Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) in Texas
A driving while intoxicated charge, commonly referred to as a DWI, is given when the driver’s blood alcohol content is 0.08 or greater. Impairment begins at 0.01 (when the first drink is consumed). However, every state, including Texas, has set the legal limit at under 0.08. A driver or passenger, regardless of any intoxication, can also be fined up to $500 for having an open container of alcohol within the vehicle.
There are three levels of punishment for a DWI. The first offense is a fine of up to $2,000, between three and 180 days in jail, loss of a driver’s license for up to one year, and an annual fee of $1,000 to $2,000 for three years in order to retain the driver’s license. If the second offense occurs within a period of five years, the offender must install an ignition switch operated by breathing into it, which prevents the driver from operating their vehicle if their blood alcohol content is 0.08 or greater.
The second offense, in the state of Texas is a fine of up to $4,000, one month to one year in jail, the loss of their driver’s license for up to two years, and an annual fee of $1,000, $1,500, or $2,000 for three years in order to retain the driver’s license. The third offense is a $10,000 fine, between two and 10 years in prison, loss of a driver’s license for up to two years, and an annual fee of $1,000 to $2,000 for three years in order to retain the driver’s license.
Driving drunk with a child passenger is an even greater offense than simply driving drunk. Fines can be as great as $10,000, the offender can spend up to two years in prison, and lose their license for up to 180 days.
We Defend Clients That Have Been Charged with the Following DWI & Alcohol Related Charges:
- DWI with child passenger;
- Boating while intoxicated
- BWI with Firearm;
- Biking while intoxicated; and
- Driving a golf cart while intoxicated
Misdemeanor Charges in Texas
A misdemeanor is a much smaller offense than a felony. There are three types of misdemeanors: Class A, Class B, and Class C. However, the statute of limitations is just two years for a misdemeanor, meaning that the crime cannot be punished if it occurred more than two years ago.
Class A Misdemeanor
A Class A misdemeanor, such as carrying a gun without a permit, is punishable with a fine not exceeding $4,000 and/or jail time up to one year. Texas statute Sec. 12.21.
Class B Misdemeanor
A Class B misdemeanor, such as possessing two or fewer ounces of marijuana, is punishable with a fine not exceeding $2,000 and/or jail time up to 180 days. Texas statute Sec. 12.22.
Class C Misdemeanor
A Class B misdemeanor, such as theft of less than $50, is punishable with a fine not exceeding $500 and no jail time. Texas statute Sec. 12.23.
We Defend Clients That Have Been Charged with the Following Misdemeanor Offenses:
- Theft ($50 to $500 and $500 to $1,500);
- Possession of marijuana;
- Family violence; and
- Unlawful carrying of a weapon
Juvenile Charges in Texas
The goal of the adult criminal justice system is punishment and public safety, while the goal of the juvenile criminal justice system has a larger focus on rehabilitation. As such, children under the age of 18 are often given much lighter punishments than adults for similar charges. Facilities are meant to be safe and reconstructive, where youths can learn skills and values as opposed to solely punishment.
Punishment varies greatly depending on the crime committed. In most cases, juvenile criminal records are kept secret to allow the youth to a promising future life. Exceptions to this include those youths who must register as sex offenders and those who have committed serious crimes that require them to complete their punishment as an adult in adult correctional facilities.
We defend Clients Facing Juvenile Charges Such As:
- Minor in possession of alcohol
- Driving under the influence
- Burglary of a home or motor vehicle
- Assault; and
- Drug possession
If you or a family member has been charged with a federal crime, state crime, misdemeanor, a DWI, or a juvenile charge, it is vital to get in contact with an experienced Texas criminal defense attorney to give you the best chances for your and your family’s future. Contact the law offices of Tim Clancy at (214) 970-9955, seven days a week, 24 hours a day for a free, confidential consultation today. Don’t hesitate to call us now to get started on your case as soon as possible.
Tim Clancy Attorney at Law have years of experience defending people in the Dallas – Fort Worth area and throughout the entire state of Texas. Our criminal law firm has successfully defended clients resulting in state and federal charges getting dropped, obtained case dismissals, charge reductions and acquittals. Choosing the right criminal defense attorney is one of the most important decisions you will make. Whether you have been accused of a crime or simply are being investigated, your rights and freedom are in jeopardy. It is important to have the counsel of an experienced criminal defense lawyer as early as possible. Our legal team takes a team approach, utilizing years of experience and knowledge to provide you with a strategic, aggressive defense to fight the charges against you and protect your rights and interests.