League City Misdemeanors Attorney
Like other US states and the federal government, Texas categorizes crimes by severity and punishes them according to sentencing rules for that criminal offense. At the core of the state criminal justice system is the Texas Penal Code’s classification of offenses as misdemeanors or felonies, with the latter being the more serious of the two. Still, a conviction on minor misdemeanor charges can lead to jail time, fines, and collateral consequences that impact your life after serving your criminal sentence. As such, you must take advantage of all defenses and opportunities to fight the charges.
One of your first priorities after a misdemeanor arrest should be retaining legal counsel, as it is a mistake to represent yourself even for a seemingly minor case. You put your rights, wallet, and future at risk, so trust the Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates to advocate on your behalf. Please contact our firm today to set up a consultation with a League City misdemeanors attorney who will provide personalized advice. A summary of how the laws work is also useful.
Common Misdemeanor Crimes in Texas
Mr. Nelson started his legal career as a prosecutor, representing the government in pursuing criminal charges against defendants. He gained extensive experience and in-depth knowledge prosecuting offenders, but now applies these skills to protecting the rights of defendants. You can trust our team to aggressively defend your interests if you were arrested for misdemeanor charges, including:
- Driving While Intoxicated (DWI), which covers both alcohol and drug impairment;
- Serious traffic violations, such as speeding, leaving the scene of an accident, and street racing;
- Simple assault, i.e., the basic offense of intentionally causing injury, threatening harm, or making offensive contact – as separate from aggravated assault, which is a felony;
- Criminal mischief, including vandalism, tampering with and damaging property, and applying graffiti;
- Certain lower-level sex crimes that do not involve children, such as indecent exposure, public lewdness, prostitution, solicitation, and pimping; and,
- Theft, an offense that is charged as a felony or misdemeanor based upon the value of the property that was misappropriated. When the amount is less than $1,500, a person could be arrested for a misdemeanor.
Penalties for Misdemeanor Convictions
There are three classifications for misdemeanor offenses, and the punishment increases in terms of severity of the crime.
Class C Misdemeanor: The lowest level misdemeanor does not even include jail time, though a judge could order a maximum fine of $500 if you are convicted. If there is no class indicated for an offense, it will be considered a Class C Misdemeanor. Examples include public intoxication and theft of items valued under $100.
Class B Misdemeanor: If convicted for an offense in this category, you face up to 180 days in jail and a $2,000 fine. Drunk driving, theft between $100 and $750, drug possession are examples of Class B Misdemeanors.
Class A Misdemeanor: The most serious crime in the misdemeanor category is punishable by up to a year in jail and fine up to $4,000. Class A Misdemeanors include criminal trespass of a home and marijuana possession of 2 to 4 ounces, as well as DWI with blood alcohol concentration (BAC) in excess of .15 percent.
Note that these penalties are subject to enhancements in certain cases, which means that a judge could order longer jail sentences and higher fines. The general law on misdemeanor enhancements may apply, often in cases where the defendant has multiple convictions – for the same offense or other criminal activity. The Texas Penal Code also includes numerous provisions where a judge could order an enhancement for a specific crime, such as assault against a family member.
Options for Fighting Misdemeanor Charges
This description of the penalties for a misdemeanor conviction should convince you that mounting a solid defense strategy is essential. Keep in mind that the prosecutor must prove each element of a misdemeanor offense beyond a reasonable doubt, so your approach will include attacking weaknesses in the evidence. Plus, though every case is different, you might have grounds to fight the charges based upon:
- A violation of your constitutional protections against unlawful search and seizure;
- Acts in self-defense, defense of others, or defense of property;
- Lack of reasonable suspicion, especially when police unlawfully pull over a motorist for DWI;
- Lack of probable cause to make an arrest; and,
- Entrapment by government officials.
You could also qualify to resolve misdemeanor charges via plea bargaining, which is common because the crime is typically less serious. The prosecutor might agree to a lower class of misdemeanor, lenient punishment, or probation.
Working with a League City misdemeanors lawyer is the key to success with these strategies. You can count on the Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates to handle critical tasks throughout the criminal process, including:
- Representing you at your arraignment after arrest, in which the court will read the official charges and address bail;
- Reviewing the prosecution’s evidence to find weaknesses;
- Conducting an investigation and collecting information that supports your defense;
- Drawing the judge’s attention to the defenses described above, which is usually accomplished by a motion in court;
- Deposing the prosecutor’s witnesses; and,
- Appearing at all court hearings and conferences.
Our team will diligently prepare for trial and advocate on your behalf when the date arrives. We will be assertive in cross-examining the prosecution’s witnesses, presenting evidence, and making arguments to the jury. If convicted, you can rely on our lawyers to assist at your sentencing hearing to obtain the best possible outcome.
Consult with a League City Misdemeanors Attorney About Defense Options
An overview of misdemeanor crimes in Texas is helpful, but this information should also make it clear that skilled legal representation is essential. You have important rights to protect during investigations, before an arrest, and throughout the criminal proceedings. For more information on defenses and other options for fighting the charges, please contact the Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates. You can call (281) 280-0100 or go online to schedule a consultation. After reviewing your circumstances, a misdemeanor lawyer in Galveston County can explain possible strategies.
Contacting us will only take a moment of your day
Tad and Amber are literally top of the game. When I need results, they are the only people I trust. Quality of service, knowledge and professionalism throughout. Don't gamble with a lawyer on any legal issue, you only want to bet on the best!
Thank you Tad Nelson for standing up for me and what is right, Tad Nelson is obviously well known and respected through out the court system as he spoke with authority and precisely to the assistant DA resulting in the dismissal of my case before the case went to trial. Thank you again. if you want it done call Tad Nelson
I hired them a while back for a DWI out in Harris County, they're good and if you need help with any kind of legal matter, give em a call. For a lawyer, Tad has a great personality so working with him should be easier than working with other lawyers.
He is the one lawyer that I can call and put my trust into. We’ve used him a couple of times, once for a family matter and another time for a troubled relative. He’ll help, tell you the truth with no sugar-coating, and will work for his salt. He’s a good guy and when you go to their office, they make you feel at home, like you’re part of the team. Good lawyers and great folks.
I've had the pleasure of working with Tad personally as a technology consultant for him in the past. We've eaten lunch and dinner together. I know that Tad is very dedicated to his clients and cares for them off the clock. He's definitely the lawyer you want on your side.