In Texas, there’s Capital Murder, Murder, Manslaughter or Criminally Negligent Homicide.

Whatever the term, you are looking at the most severe, life-changing accusation a person can ever face, and you will need serious legal help immediately.

Capital Murder automatically carries the death penalty in Texas. For a murder to be elevated to Capital Murder, prosecutors must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that:

  • The victim was a peace officer or fireman killed on duty
  • The defendant intentionally kills while committing another felony, like kidnapping, burglary, robbery, aggravated sexual assault, arson, etc.
  • The defendant is paid to commit murder or pays someone to commit murder
  • The defendant kills someone while trying to escape from jail
  • The defendant murders another person while in jail
  • The defendant murders more than one person
  • The defendant murders a child younger than six years of age
  • The defendant murders someone in retaliation for their service in the judiciary

Murder in Texas can carry a sentence of between 5 and 99 years in prison, and a fine limited to $10,000. A “heat of passion” case will face 2 to 20 years in prison. Defenses against a Murder charge in Texas include:

  • Lack of intent
  • Lack of knowledge
  • Insanity
  • Intoxication
  • Self-defense
  • “Heat of passion” (Example: The defendant was provoked by fear, rage, terror or some other extreme emotion.)

Manslaughter in Texas is a second degree felony, and prosecutors must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant recklessly caused the death of another individual. This charge typically carries a sentence of between two and twenty years in state prison and/or a fine no more than $10,000. Available defenses include but are not limited to:

  • Actual Innocence (not doing it is always the best defense)
  • Self-Defense (where you were NOT the aggressor and faced a mortal threat)
  • Insanity
  • “Heat of passion”

With Criminally Negligent Homicide… a person is accused of killing someone by engaging in terrible behavior he should’ve known would pose an extreme danger and an unjustifiable risk. This offense is a state jail felony and comes with 180 days to 2 years in state jail.

At Jarvis & Kelly we will put every resource available to work on your case and craft the powerful defense you need for the fight of your life.

Jarvis & Kelly are the ace defenders you want on your side.

Good thing these world-class warriors happen to practice in your own backyard. Call us today (903) 891-8898.