Texas Solicitation of Prostitution

In Texas, solicitation of prostitution is a crime. The Texas solicitation of prostitution law is defined as intentionally offering or agreeing to pay someone else to engage in sexual conduct. Texas solicitation of prostitution is a state jail felony. The penalty range is 180 days to 2 years in a state jail prison. A defendant can also receive probation if they are eligible.

The Texas solicitation of prostitution law was a misdemeanor crime until recently. Advocates that fight sex trafficking have worked hard to enact harsher laws. As a result of this new law police agencies have begun enforcing the Texas solicitation of prostitution law through “sting operations”.

A “sting operation” is a type of police operation in which undercover officers pose as prostituted individuals or those willing to engage in prostitution, in order to catch individuals who are attempting to solicit prostitution. The goal of a sting operation is to target the demand side of prostitution, by catching those who are willing to pay for sexual services. These operations often involve the use of online ads, social media, and other forms of communication to attract potential suspects. Once the suspect agrees to engage in a sexual act in exchange for money, they are arrested by the police. Usually, the suspect is told to come to a hotel room or house and once they walk in, they are arrested. Recently a Prostitution sting operation in Frisco led to 46 men being arrested.

Enforcement of the Texas solicitation of prostitution law has become popular with police agencies and it’s important to hire an experienced criminal attorney to represent any individual arrested for this crime. An experienced criminal attorney can review the discovery and determine what legal defenses are available. A criminal attorney can also negotiate with the prosecutor to try and find a resolution to the case that does the least amount of harm to the client. A conviction should be avoided if at all possible.

What Are Drug Free Zones in Texas Law?

In Texas, “drug free zones” refer to areas around certain locations, such as schools and parks, where drug offenses are subject to enhanced penalties. These enhanced penalties are typically in the form of increased fines and/or prison sentences. Examples of these locations include:

  • Public and private primary and secondary schools
  • Day-care centers, youth centers, and juvenile detention facilities
  • Public swimming pools, video arcades, and youth sports facilities
  • Within 1,000 feet of the real property on which a school or youth center is located
  • Public parks and playgrounds
  • Public housing projects

Undercover police officers often intentionally set up drug buys in drug free zones in order to take advantage of the enhanced penalties. An experience criminal attorney can advise a defendant how a drug free zone will affect his case. Drug free zone enhancements often come into play during plea bargain negotiations with prosecutors.

Tampering with Evidence in Texas

In Texas, a person can be charged with Tampering with Evidence if they intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly alter, destroy, or conceal any record, document, or thing with the intent to impair its availability as evidence in an investigation or official proceeding.

To prove that a person has tampered with evidence, the prosecution must typically show that the person had knowledge that an investigation or official proceeding was in progress or imminent, and that they had the intent to impair the availability of the evidence.

The prosecution may present evidence such as witness testimony, surveillance footage, or physical evidence that has been tampered with, to prove the elements of the crime. Additionally, the prosecution may present evidence of the defendant’s motive or state of mind, to show that they had the intent to impair the availability of the evidence.

The crime of tampering with evidence can happen in many different ways. For instance, if a person is pulled over by the police and they have been smoking a marijuana cigarette. They panic and are afraid of being arrested so they attempt to eat the marijuana as the police approach the car. If the officer is able to recover the marijuana, they can then charge the person with tampering with evidence. The charge of Tampering with Evidence in Texas is usually a felony of the third degree that has a penalty range from 2 to 10 years in prison. If the crime involves moving or destroying a body the penalty range is 2to 20 years.

If a person sees a body and doesn’t report that to the police, they can be charged with tampering with evidence as a misdemeanor crime.

People have been charged with tampering with evidence by throwing away weapons used in crimes, deleting text messages while under investigation, or flushing drugs down a toilet when the police are serving a search warrant. If you are charged with tampering evidence, you need to contact a criminal lawyer as soon as possible. There are defenses and strategies a good lawyer can use that will help a person charged with this crime.

Reckless Driving Criminal Charge in Texas

A Reckless Driving Criminal Charge in Texas is a misdemeanor crime. A reckless driving charge is  punishable by  a fine up to $200 and jail time up to 30 days. 

To prove the offense of reckless driving under Texas law, the prosecution must prove that the defendant operated a vehicle in a willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property. This can be shown through evidence of excessive speeding, erratic or dangerous driving, or other actions that demonstrate a conscious disregard for the safety of others. The prosecution must also prove that the defendant was operating the vehicle on a public road or highway.

The criminal intent is the key to the prosecution. The prosecutor must prove willful and wanton disregard which means deliberate, conscious indifference to to the safety of others. There are several ways a criminal lawyer can defense a reckless driving charge under Texas law. These could be:

       1.  Lack of intent: If the defendant did not intend to drive recklessly, they may be able to argue that they did not have the necessary intent to be guilty of the crime.

      2. Necessity: If the defendant can argue that they were driving recklessly because it was necessary to avoid a greater harm, such as to avoid hitting a pedestrian or to             escape from a dangerous situation, they may be able to use the defense of necessity.

      3. Mistake of fact: If the defendant can argue that they believed they were driving safely and that their actions were not reckless, they may be able to use the defense               of mistake of fact.

An experienced criminal defense attorney may be a able to use the facts of the case to negotiate a plea to a lessor crime. For example the traffic offense of speeding is a lessor included offense for reckless driving charge and is something the reckless driving charge can be lowered to with a plea bargain. 


Resisting Arrest in Texas

Resisting arrest is a serious crime in Texas. Since the crime occurs when a person is actively resisting physical control by a police officer prosecutors give these cases more scrutiny. Under Texas law, the elements of the crime of resisting arrest are:

  1. The defendant intentionally prevents or obstructs a peace officer from effecting an arrest;
  2. The defendant knows the person being arrested is a peace officer;
  3. The peace officer was acting under color of the officer’s official authority; and
  4. The defendant’s conduct was not authorized by law.

Resisting arrest is not an intentional assault on a police officer. That is a more serious offense that is a felony. The crime of resisting arrest usually involves pulling away from an officer who is trying to gain custody of a person or actively physically not complying when officers have put their hands on an individual when making an arrest or search.

Under Texas law, a person may have several legal defenses when resisting arrest. Some possible defenses include:

  1. Self-defense: If the person being arrested reasonably believed that the use of force was necessary to protect themselves from the officer’s use of excessive force.
  2. Necessity: If the person being arrested reasonably believed that their actions were necessary to prevent greater harm, such as preventing an imminent crime.
  3. Lack of intent: If the person being arrested did not intend to resist arrest and their actions were accidental or the result of confusion.
  4. Illegal arrest: If the arrest itself was illegal, such as if the officer did not have probable cause or a valid warrant.
  5. False arrest: If the person being arrested was falsely arrested, such as if the officer had the wrong person.

It’s important to note that these defenses must be proven in court, and that the facts and circumstances of each case will be different. Resisting arrest is a misdemeanor offense that carries a penalty range of one day to one year in jail. Resisting arrest can become a third degree felony if a person uses a deadly weapon to resist an arrest or search.

If you have been charged with the crime of resisting arrest it is important to hire an experienced criminal attorney to represent you through the criminal proceedings.

Public Lewdness Crimes In Texas

In Texas, public lewdness is a crime that involves engaging in sexual activity or exposing one’s genitals in a public place where others are present. It is generally classified as a Class A misdemeanor, which carries a potential penalty of up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $4,000. A defendant can also receive probation if they haven’t been convicted a of a felony.

Under Texas law, a person commits the crime of public lewdness if they knowingly engage in any of the following activities in a public place or, if not in a public place, where they can be readily observed from a public place:

  • Sexual contact, sexual intercourse, or deviate sexual intercourse
  • Act of sexual gratification involving the genitals of one person and the mouth or anus of another person
  • Act of sexual gratification involving the penetration of the anus or female sexual organ of an animal or fowl by any means
  • Exposure or exhibition of the genitals, the anus, or any part of the female breast below the top of the areola with intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person

It is important to note that public lewdness is a specific intent crime, which means that the prosecution must prove that the defendant intended to engage in the prohibited activity and knew that it was in a public place or could be observed from a public place. If the sexual act didn’t take place in public a person can still be found guilty if the prosecution can prove the defendant was reckless about the sex act being observed by another person. The prosecution must also prove the that the other person was offended or alarmed by viewing the sex act.

If you have been charged with public lewdness in Texas, it is important to seek the advice of a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. An experienced attorney can help you understand the charges against you, advise you of your legal options, and defend you against the charges in court.

Texas Criminal Immunity

Texas criminal immunity laws can be very beneficial to a criminal defendant. Texas has very specific types of immunity which grant is statutory provisions in the Texas Criminal Code.

In Texas criminal law, immunity refers to the protection granted to an individual from criminal prosecution. There are two types of criminal immunity that may be granted in Texas:

  1. Transactional immunity: This type of immunity completely protects an individual from prosecution for any crimes that they may have committed related to their testimony or cooperation with authorities. This type of immunity is typically granted in exchange for an individual’s cooperation in a criminal investigation or prosecution. Transactional immunity is broader than use immunity because it conveys immunity for the entire transaction. Transactional immunity may bar prosecution for crimes not previously known to the police. 
  2. Use immunity: This type of immunity only protects an individual from the use of their testimony or other evidence against them in a criminal prosecution. This type of immunity is also called testimonial immunity. It does not protect the individual from being charged with a crime or from being prosecuted by any other evidence against them that didn’t come from their testimony. In other words, the witness is only protected from the incrimination for the words that come out of his mouth.

It’s important to note that the prosecutor has the power confer immunity to a witness, but only with approval of the trial judge. Transactional immunity gives the greatest benefit to the defendant but is not often offered by the prosecuting attorney.  Use immunity is used much more frequently. If a person is granted immunity, then they must testify. If they refuse to testify, then the judge can hold them in contempt, and they can face jail time and a fine.

A defendant’s criminal lawyer can negotiate an immunity agreement with the prosecutor. An experience criminal attorney will review all discovery and determine if an immunity agreement will benefit the client. Immunity agreements must be in writing and approved by the trial court judge.

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