Monthly Archives:' January 2014

Aggravated Sexual Assault Case Dismissed!

BIG WIN this past week in a Criminal Case for the attorneys at Benavides & Serrano.

Client was charged with aggravated sexual assault of a Child. Client is a legal permanent resident and was in danger of being deported. Not to mention he was looking at up to 99 years in prison! After fighting the case for over a year, the state finally dismissed all charges against him. He is finally able to sleep peacefully at night, and just started a new job.

If you have sexual assault case or similar, please contact our attorneys today for a free consultation.

Law of Parties in Texas

As a criminal defense lawyer in Houston I see many types of cases.  Some of the hardest types of charges for my clients to understand are charges where they claim they were not the ones responsible for the action, or they did not know it was going to be as bad as it turned out.

Laws of Parties in Texas

For example, I had a client charged with aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon.  My client decided with a few friends that they were going to fight with a kid and steal his shoes.  When the person they wanted to fight showed resistance, one of his friends pulled out a gun and robbed him at gunpoint.  My client did not understand why they would charge him with a deadly weapon, when he did not have the gun.

Another case I had was a burglary of a habitation.  In this case my client was the getaway driver.  Her friends broke into a house and stole items, while my client served as a lookout and as the driver.  When they were caught, she did not understand why she was being arrested for burglary of a habitation since she never went into the house.

The answer for both lies in section 7.02 of the Texas Penal Code.  Section 7.02 states:

§ 7.02. CRIMINAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR CONDUCT OF ANOTHER.

  (a) A person is criminally responsible for an offense committed by the conduct of another if

  1. acting with the kind of culpability required for the offense, he causes or aids an innocent or nonresponsible person to engage in conduct prohibited by the definition of the offense;
  2. acting with intent to promote or assist the commission of the offense, he solicits, encourages, directs, aids, or attempts to aid the other person to commit the offense;  or
  3. having a legal duty to prevent commission of the offense and acting with intent to promote or assist its commission, he fails to make a reasonable effort to prevent commission of the offense.

(b)  If, in the attempt to carry out a conspiracy to commit one felony, another felony is committed by one of the conspirators, all conspirators are guilty of the felony actually committed, though having no intent to commit it, if the offense was committed in furtherance of the unlawful purpose and was one that should have been anticipated as a result of the carrying out of the conspiracy.

So with this section that they often call the “law of parties”, a person can be charged with a crime if they are acting with the individuals who actually committed the crime.  These matters can sometimes get very complicated, and if you have a similar situation it is very important that you get assistance from a criminal defense attorney in your area.