Defenses Under Texas Law:
A Comprehensive Guide
Under the Texas Penal Code, a person accused of a crime may be able to assert a defense, which can potentially result in the charges being dismissed or reduced.
The following are some of the defenses that may be available under Texas law (click the link to be taken to the page about that defense):
- Self-defense: A person may use reasonable force, including deadly force, to protect themselves or others from imminent harm.
- Defense of property: A person may use reasonable force, including deadly force, to protect their property from being taken or damaged by another person.
- Affirmative links: The connection or lack of connection between the accused, and an item they are accused of illegally possessing (for example, affirmative links connecting the passenger in a car to contraband found within the vehicle).
- Illegal Search and Seizure: The 4th amendment to the constitution protects citizens against unreasonable search and seizure. That means a warrant, or a narrowly construed exception to the warrant requirement. Unlawfully obtained evidence can be suppressed, and not used against the Defendant at trial.
- Consent: A person cannot be charged with a crime if the alleged victim consented to the conduct in question.
- Alibi: A person may argue that they were somewhere else at the time the crime was committed and therefore could not have committed the crime.
- Mistake of fact: A person may argue that they were mistaken about a fact, such as the ownership of property, and therefore did not have the intent to commit a crime.
- Duress: A person may argue that they were forced to commit the crime under threat of harm to themselves or others.
- Intoxication: A person may argue that they were so intoxicated at the time of the crime that they did not have the intent to commit the crime.
- Insanity: A person may argue that they were legally insane at the time of the crime and therefore did not have the mental capacity to understand the nature of their actions.
- Entrapment: A person may argue that they were induced or encouraged by law enforcement to commit the crime.
It is important to note that the availability and success of any defense will depend on the specific facts and circumstances of the case.
It is advisable to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney like LeGrande Law to determine the best defense strategy for a particular case.