Criminal Law Blog

Intellectually Disabled or Mentally Ill: Competency to Stand Trial and the Insanity Defense

This week, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) issued its opinion in Moore v. Texas (read it here).  This case is not only a victory for Texas Death Row inmate Bobby Moore; it’s also a major event in Texas criminal law. Why?  SCOTUS has ruled that the Texas legal procedure for determining if…


5 Things to Know About Plea Bargains

Sometimes, the best thing to do after someone has been arrested and charged with a serious crime (or crimes) is to work out a deal with the prosecutor rather than go to trial.  This is called “plea negotiations” or “plea bargaining.” The result is the person does go before a judge for sentencing but the…


10 Things to Know About Mail Fraud Prosecutions

If you are following the criminal trial of Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price, then you know that one of the big federal felony charges he’s facing is five counts of “Deprivation of Honest Services by Mail Fraud, Aiding and Abetting.” John Wiley Price’s Felony Counts 2 -7: Mail Fraud That’s in addition to the…


FBI Investigations and DOJ Prosecutions: Fighting for Your Privacy Rights

Of paramount concern to criminal defense attorneys is protecting due process and making sure that any investigation and prosecution by the government abides by constitutional protections like limited police powers, the right to privacy, and search and seizure protocols. Criminal Defense and Privacy Protections This is true for the underlying investigation into criminal activity.  It…


Dallas County Bond Schedule 2017

The latest Dallas County Bond Schedule has been placed into Michael Lowe’s Digital Library on Scribd. It’s provided for free as a public service. The Dallas County Bond Schedule is effective February 2017. As explained in the document:  “These are recommended amounts. Bonds may be set higher or lower than the amounts shown if justified…


Texas Needs New Asset Forfeiture Law Reform: Spread the Word

Asset forfeiture:  yes, we’re back on the stump about it again. First, let’s talk about the status of the pending asset forfeiture reform legislation as of the end of February 2017. We wrote about this proposed legislation right around Christmas; see the details in “Will Texas End Civil Forfeiture in 2017?” 1.  Texas Senate On…


John Wiley Price Trial: a Dallas Criminal Defense Lawyer’s 10 Things to Know

Back in July 2014, Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price was arrested by federal authorities on corruption charges.  It was a real shock.  The entire city reeled from the news of District 3’s “Our Man Downtown” being indicted. For details, read our July 2014 post “The John Wiley Price Case: a Dallas Criminal Defense Lawyer’s…


Juvenile Arrests in Texas: When Kids Are Charged With Adult Crimes

Here in Texas, there’s lots of talk about what is the right age for prosecution as an adult and not as a juvenile.  Is Texas wrong to prosecute seventeen year olds as adults?  Big hint here: the United States Supreme Court has ruled that in the United States of America, you become a legal adult…


Heroin Overdose Antidote Naloxone (Narcan) Available Over the Counter in Dallas and Fort Worth

Heroin overdoses kill people.  Ditto, other opioids – like fentanyl.  In fact, it’s much easier to OD on fentanyl than heroin.  Why?  Fentanyl is extremely powerful; more so than heroin. Fentanyl is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine. Here in North Texas, combining heroin with synthetic opioid fentanyl is popular.  Fentanyl-heroin blends are sold…


Child Pornography: Defending Against Overreaching Investigations Using the Internet

Here in Texas, specific teams of law enforcement are dedicated to investigating, arresting, and prosecuting child pornography laws.  Their focus is solely on building cases against individuals violating either state or federal child porn statutes.   That’s fine.  Task forces have been around for years. Overreaching Child Porn Investigations Violate the Law The problem today is…