Houston, Texas Aggravated Crime Lawyer
Tad Nelson & Associates: Aggravated Felony and Aggravated Crimes Defense Lawyer — Houston, Galveston, League City, Texas
Not all crimes are the same. Many offenses are classified as “aggravated” under the Texas Penal Code. As that adjective suggests, an aggravated crime is considered a more serious level of offense–and therefore subject to harsher penalties.
Prosecutors often pursue aggravated charges in an attempt to coerce an accused individual into pleading guilty to a lesser, non-aggravated offense. If you find yourself in such a situation, you need a qualified Houston criminal defense attorney at your side. At the Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates, we have experience on both sides of the courtroom, so we understand how prosecutors think. More importantly, we know how to fight and win at trial.
What Makes a Crime “Aggravated”?
The Penal Code requires prosecutors to prove specific elements–beyond a reasonable doubt–in order to sustain an “aggravated” criminal charge. The specific elements will vary depending on the type of offense. Here are some of the more common aggravated offenses we have dealt with at the Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates:
- Aggravated robbery
- Aggravated kidnapping
- Aggravated assault
- Assault of children or the elderly
- Assault of a police officer
- Assault with a deadly weapon
- Hate crimes
- Murder and attempted murder
- Terror threats
- Voluntary and involuntary manslaughter
To illustrate what makes a crime “aggravated,” consider the offense of aggravated robbery. According to Section 29.02 of the Texas Penal Code, a person is guilty of robbery when, in the course of committing a theft of property, he or she threatens or causes “bodily injury to another.” But under Section 29.03, the offense becomes aggravated robbery when the defendant causes “seriously bodily injury” or “uses or exhibits a deadly weapon” in the commission of the offense. In other words, if you are accused of robbing someone while brandishing a gun, that can be charged as aggravated robbery.
This is not a minor distinction. Aggravated crimes are usually charged one level above the base offense. For instance, robbery is a second-degree felony in Texas, while aggravated robbery is a first-degree felony. The latter carries a potential maximum prison term of 99 years–effectively a life sentence.
We Represent People Charged With Aggravated Crimes in the Houston & Galveston Areas
Given the serious implications of an aggravated criminal charge, it is imperative to work with an experienced Houston criminal defense attorney who will fight for your best interests. The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates helps people in Houston, Galveston, and League City who have been accused of all types of serious crimes. Contact us today at 281-962-7852 if you are facing an aggravated criminal charge and need to speak with someone right away.