Texas Felony Charges
In the State of Texas, crimes are grouped into two general categories that include misdemeanors and felonies. A felony is a more serious charge, and a conviction can lead to very serious consequences. If you are facing a felony charge, you owe it to yourself and your future to work closely with an experienced Waco criminal lawyer.
Common Felony Charges
Felony charges are quite varied, and every case incorporates its own unique circumstances. Some of the most common felony charges, however, include:
Misdemeanors are lesser infractions against the state, and convictions typically lead to less than a year in jail, less significant fines, community service, or some combination of these three. It’s worth noting, however, that a misdemeanor conviction can still take a heavy toll on your future.
The first step in the felony process is an arrest, which may be precipitated by a search. The officer who searches you must have probable cause for doing so, and this means that it has to be more likely than not that you are guilty of a crime. To search your property, including your car, the police must have a warrant that is issued by the court except under exacting circumstances. Upon arrest, you have constitutional rights in place, which include the right to remain silent. This means you do not have to answer the questions asked of you, and it is very likely in your best interest that you not do so.
Your Plea at Arraignment
If you are charged with a felony, you will be required to enter your plea (after the charges against you are read in open court). Typically, the arraignment occurs within 72 hours of arrest, and your plea options include:
Pleading Guilty – If you plead guilty, it means that you admit to committing the crime with which you are charged.
Pleading Not Guilty – If you plead not guilty, it means you maintain that you did not commit the crime with which you are charged. After such a plea, your trial date will be set.
Pleading No Contest – A plea of no contest means that you are not admitting to being guilty of the crime with which you are charged – but neither are you disputing the charge. Often, a no-contest plea is entered when the potential for a related civil trial exists.
Mute Plea – A mute plea is a means of entering a not guilty plea without supporting the correctness of the criminal justice process to that point.
Determining the best path forward requires the kind of careful legal consideration that only an experienced criminal lawyer can offer.
Reach out to an Experienced Waco Criminal Lawyer Today
If you are facing a felony charge, Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Waco, Texas, is a practiced criminal lawyer who is committed to skillfully advocating for your case’s optimal resolution. We are on your side, so please do not hesitate to contact or call us at 254-501-4040 today.