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Houston Domestic Violence Cases & Texas Law

March 2, 2018
Houston Domestic Violence Cases & Texas Law

Cases of domestic violence in Texas has been on the rise since 2011 (Texas Sees Increase in Domestic Violence Reports , 2017). The statistics in the state Department of Public Safety show that about 214000 people in Texas have been victims of domestic violence.

Domestic Violence: Misdemeanor or Felony Offense?

Misdemeanors and felonies are criminal offenses that are punished differently. A misdemeanor charge is sentenced up to a year, and the offender is not necessarily taken to a maximum security prison, while a felony is punishable by more than a year in prison. A felony is a more serious offense than a misdemeanor. If you’re charged with a felony offense in Harris County, you’ll need the best Houston criminal justice lawyer you can find to give you a fighting chance at avoiding what’s sure to be a lengthy jail sentence. We recommend Attorney Mark W. Bennett of the Bennett & Bennett law firm. Their phone number is 713-224-1747.

With that being said, you might be wondering whether domestic violence is a misdemeanor or a felony offense. But first, you should understand what domestic violence entails to comprehend where domestic violence falls in entirely.

Domestic violence refers to any abuse inducted upon a family member or a spouse. Domestic violence can be characterized as both a misdemeanor or a felony; it depends on the extent of damage that results from the offense. A misdemeanor domestic violence typically comprises of verbal abuse and minor assault battery. Unfortunately, if you are convicted more than twice with a misdemeanor domestic violence, it can prelude to a felony domestic violence.

A felony domestic violence as mentioned above is more critical. This offense can result in possible do-time in prison, be fined heavily and even get a restraining order against you. The following is a short list of events or outcomes that can lead a domestic violence offense to be categorized as a felony:

    • The occurrence of serious violent altercations that can cause severe injuries or even ultimately death.
    • Battery inflicted to a minor or a child.
  • If a deadly weapon is involved; let’s say a firearm, hunting knife or brass knuckles.
  • Inappropriate sexual acts
  • Acts involving conduct of an inappropriate sexual nature

You should note that a felony domestic violence charge is hard to expunge from your records. However, after many years of good behavior, it can get obsolete.

Also, whether it’s a misdemeanor domestic violence or a felony domestic violence, you can never underestimate these charges. You should find yourself a good lawyer to get you through it.

Therefore, since there has been a drastic rise in domestic violence in Texas, the state take-on on the offense is very serious.

Top Causes of Houston Family Assaults & Domestic Violence Cases

The primary causes of domestic violence include:

  1. Physical abuse – mostly start off with drug abuse and alcohol
  2. Financial abuse – involves unemployment of one of the partners hence dependent on the other

iii. Psychological abuse – involves comments that lower self-esteem of your partner or family member.

  1. Emotional abuse – involves anger, jealousy and envy
  2. History of domestic violence in a family can be passed on. Young adults and children may get negative lessons from domestic abuse at home.

In case you sense any form of domestic abuse as aforementioned, you need to be careful so that you don’t become just another number in the statistics of domestic violence in Texas.

Houston Domestic Violence Cases & Texas Law

Private Investigators; Crucial In a Scientology Lawsuit

July 24, 2017
Private Investigators; Crucial In a Scientology Lawsuit

When talking about lawsuits it generally refers to a dispute or rather a claim that is usually brought to a law court for the purpose of adjudication. Private investigators like Gradoni & Associates play a very crucial role when it comes to investigating the details, or lack thereof, of certain aspects of lawsuits. The core role of these private investigators is to obtain information about some specific activities or people so that the information can be used probably in a court of law. In the following discussion we are going to look at a news event that is related to lawsuit and private investors.

There has been rigorous talks in the Internet about lawsuits in Texas. Some news has hit the headlines of most people on claims of lawsuits in relation to the scientology church that spent millions of money over a span of 24 years spying one man. The whole story was initiated by a man by the name David Miscavige. David who was scientology leader allegedly paid some private investigators around $500,000 so that they can keep vigil about one man by the name Pal Broeker. According to the story told to the investigator’s attorney general Pal Broeker was Miscavige’s rival over the control of a certain church in Texas.

Additionally, payments that were being made of the investigators came to a standstill at the beginning of this year resulting to complains from the two involved investigators. The two were Greg Arnold and Paul Marrick. The two sued David Miscavige for going against their promises of permanently employing them and making the payments. The interesting thing about the whole story is that the scientology fraternity didn’t give any response in as much the claims were concerned. This worshipping place is actually located in the city of Los Angeles, it claims to have millions of members. Information from one executive member of the church indicate that specific number of congregants were Forty thousand.

Struggle for Power

Davis Miscavige was born in the 1950’s by a fiction writer in the field of science by the name Ron Hubbard. Ron went to seclusion for some time but unfortunately he died in the year 1986. Ron had specified the family- Annie Broeker and Pat- to be his successors but after his death Miscavige instead replaced them in act struggle for power. Moreover, according to lawsuit, David Miscavige was seriously concerned about the named successor Pal Broeker who was a great threat to him in as much as power struggle was concerned since he had been forcefully ousted out of it. For that matter, the scientology church hired a couple of investigators so that they can keep vigil of Broeker within the strictest measures of secrecy.

Other people monitored

According to trusted sources, it is said that there were more people who were being monitored. The two were executives in some pharmaceutical firm and they were Mitch Daniels and Mike Rinder. Mitch Daniels was actually a very senior person who went to be a governor in India according to lawsuit. On the other hand Mike Rinder was chiefs’ spokesman who according to lawsuits abandoned the church in the year 2007. The two were part of the largely increasing number of congregants in the church although they seriously opposed Miscavige’s leadership.

Furthermore, while disputes related to lawsuits in most cases come to settlements, the south Texas seriously need some two people who are greatly involved in the fight for power case. It was believed that Broeker had gone missing for a long time from the general public and he is one of the most witnesses required to report in the Texas law court. Consequently, this may result to the deposition of Miscavige. The information at hand is that, all the involved victims were professionals who carried themselves in the right manner and even paid taxes on their incomes until the year 2008 when they paid cash to the two investigators resulting to greenbacks in the church accounts. The contracting information is that it was said that the church cannot hire private investigators since they do not work directly for the church but instead the scientology hired private investigators. The conclusion of the matter is that the church scientology David Miscavige had no information about the job done with the investigators.

DWI Crimes: Harshly Prosecuted in Texas

June 10, 2017
DWI Crimes: Harshly Prosecuted in Texas

Many states classify operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated a crime and the State of Texas is no exception. Alcohol impairs ones mental and motor skills and driving under the influence of alcohol & drugs continues to cause a significant number of accidents that result in deaths and injuries around the world. In Houston, DWI-related car accidents are a daily occurrence and this reality doesn’t appear to be changing anytime soon.

The problem of drunk driving affects all motorists that use the road. Authorities at both the state and federal level have strengthened DWI enforcement, passed laws and sponsored campaigns against drunk driving. The Brazoria County Sheriff’s Department to the south of Houston, TX is also working hard to curb drunk driving. Although statistics show that driving while intoxicated still causes numerous fatalities, it remains a problem that costs money with many incident being preventable human accidents. The majority of the drunk driving accidents are caused by heavy drinkers and repeat DWI offenders.

Criminal Charges & Penalties for Drunk Driving

If a Texas law enforcement officer pulls you over and your blood alcohol concentration level reads 0.8% or higher, you risk being charged with a felony DWI. Texas DWI Attorney Tad Nelson is one of the best lawyers in Houston for helping people who are facing prosecution for drunk driving and he recommends never submitting to request for blood & breath testing.

Otherwise, your chance of facing harsh penalties will escalate depending on the circumstances of your case. For example, the penalties will vary based on if you had passengers when the police pulled you over, the type of license you hold and if you got involved in an accident while drunk. You also risk being charged with child endangerment if you had a child passenger at the time of police intervention. You’ll face a number of penalties depending on your history of convictions.

The charges range from a fine of up to $10,000, a two year jail term in a state jail and even suspension of drivers license for a minimum of 180 days.

When the authorities pull you over for suspected DWI, the legal expectation is that you take a breath or blood test. Snubbing the test may result in suspension of your driving license for a period that may exceed 180 days but no more than two years. Usually, the police take your driver’s license and issue you with a temporary driving permit.

Criminal Trial for Drunk Driving

This is your first arrest on based on drunk driving, you will probably be charged with a misdemeanor. You will be issued with a court date when you will stand for trial. Here you may plead guilty, or otherwise, you will be offered a chance to choose to be tried by a jury or a judge. Either of them will determine your fate when you and the prosecution present your case.

DWI Intervention Classes

Brazoria County enacted a law that provides educational services with programs to cater for First and Repeat DWI offenders. An individual convicted of DWI offense for the first time is put on probation. During this period the convict must attend and successfully complete an educational program within 180 days from the commencement of the program.

The law revokes the driving license of the offender whenever they fail to finish the program within the stipulated time. However, there are occasions where the program may grant the offender and extension. The authorities will reinstate a revoked license only when the DWI offender completes the program.

The Texas Department of State Health Services certifies the program whose standard duration is twelve hours. The same program is available to repeat offenders only that the duration is now thirty two hours. These classes are offered in the evening during weekdays and Saturday mornings. The classes cost a hundred dollars for first time offenders. This price doubles for repeat offenders.