What Should I Do if the Police Want to Question Me?

July 6, 2016

By Texas Criminal Defense Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal

(972) 369-0577

http://www.rosenthalwadas.com

CALL ME FIRST!!!!

 

 

*Jeremy Rosenthal is an attorney licensed in the State of Texas and is Board Certified in Criminal Law.  Nothing in this article is intended to be legal advice.  For legal advice about any situation you should contact a lawyer directly.  This forum and its contents are not subject to the attorney-client privilege.


Ex Parte Emergency Protective Orders — Q & A

June 29, 2016

By Texas Criminal Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal

www.rosenthalwadas.com

(972) 369-0577

They Handed Me an Emergency Protective Order After an Arrest for Assault/ Family Violence between me and my loved one… What Does This Mean?

An Emergency Protective Order (“EPO”) is a broad and sweeping Order issued by a magistrate judge (often a city judge or justice of the peace) which restricts someone arrested for assault/ family violence from going various places and/or from communicating with various people.

An EPO can keep people out of their own house, keep them away from their family, and prevent them from communicating with family too.  Other provisions can include keeping the arrestee away from their kid’s schools and can order them not to possess firearms.

They can obviously be extremely disruptive and cause financial stress exacerbating existing problems and frustrating reconciliation.  They can be done “Ex Parte” which means with only the police or prosecutors present.  To be enforceable, though, the Defendant must be given notice.

I Don’t Understand What I can or Can’t Do Now?

Emergency Protective Orders are not “one size fits all.”  Several statutes cover them and most courts have cobbled together their own standard order incorporating some of the Statutory language.

If you have questions about them, it is best to run those questions by a lawyer so as to be sure not to violate the order.

How Do We Change This Order or Have the Judge Undo it?

The law provides the ability to modify or rescind the Order.  This is a very nuanced area of legal practice.  Once someone is arrested for domestic violence either for a misdemeanor or a felony they are a target for the police or prosecutors who have already made up their mind the Defendant is guilty.  By trying to “dig out of a hole” or “set the record straight” or even just to plead with the Judge to lift the order – a person can give law enforcement even more statements to twist or bend to fit their own narrative.

You should have an attorney file a motion to modify the EPO and get it set for a hearing as soon as you can.  At the hearing the attorney can help make sure the judge learns not only the facts of the case that aren’t in the police report but also help the judge understand how the Order is hurting everyone involved instead of helping.

What Happens if I Violate the Order?

Violation of a Protective Order is a Class A Misdemeanor so you obviously don’t want to do that.  Often the prosecution’s case for assault crumbles because the facts simply aren’t on their side — but they can often prosecute for a technical violation of a protective order and get their pound of flesh that way.

The Bottom Line

You need an attorney if you’ve been issued an EPO whether or not it is Ex Parte.  There will almost certainly be an ensuing criminal prosecution where your lawyer can formulate a plan to help put the entire situation behind you.

*Jeremy Rosenthal is an attorney licensed to practice in Texas and he is Board Certified in Criminal Law.  Nothing in this article is intended to be legal advice.  For legal advice about any situation you should contact an attorney directly.


Texas Criminal Appeal Deadlines Chart

June 3, 2016

By Criminal Defense Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal

(972) 369-0577

www.rosenthalwadas.com

Here are some basic deadlines for filing criminal appeals in Texas.  As always, please refer to the Texas Rules of Appellate Procedure to resolve any questions.

Basic Appeal of a Final Judgement:

Without Motion for new trial, motion to modify, motion to reinstate, or request for findings of fact and conclusions of law filed:

Notice of appeal:  30 days (filed with the trial court)

Designation of clerk’s record:  30 days (filed with the trial court)

Designation of reporter’s record:  30 days (filed with the trial court with copy to reporter)

With Motion for new trial, motion to modify, motion to reinstate, or request for findings of fact and conclusions of law filed:

Post Judgment Motions: Due 30 days from Judgment (filed with Trial Court)

Request for Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law:  Due 20 days (filed with Trial Court)

Notice of Appeal:  90 days (filed with Trial Court)

Designation of Clerk’s Record:  90 days (filed with trial court)

Designation of Reporter’s Record: 90 days (filed with Trial Court with Copy to Court Reporter)

All Basic Criminal Appeals Regardless of Motions Filed:

Appellant Brief (Defendant):  Due 30 days from the completion of the record

Appellee Brief (State):  Due 30 days after the Appellant’s brief submitted

Appellant reply Brief:  Due 20 days after Appellee brief submitted

Motion for rehearing:  Due 15 days after disposition

Petition for Discretionary Review:  Last ruling of Court of Appeals +30 days (filed with Court of Criminal Appeals).

 

*Jeremy Rosenthal is an attorney licensed to practice in the State of Texas.  He is Board Certified in Criminal Law.  Nothing in this article is considered to be legal advice.  For legal advice about any situation contact a lawyer directly.

 


Why We Defend Sex Crime Allegations

June 3, 2016

By Collin County Criminal Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal

www.rosenthalwadas.com

(972) 369-0577

We defend sex cases because injustice turns our stomachs.

Everyone feels the need to protect the innocent and vulnerable victims of sex crimes.  Who doesn’t feel like running through a wall to protect someone from such an atrocity?  But those strong emotions can easily go out of balance and out of whack and can ultimately blind us to the fundamental issue of whether the allegation is true to begin with.

Sex crime allegations have the possibility to be emotionally fueled rather than factually fueled more than practically any other crime – especially if a child is alleged to be the victim.  As a result it there is a potential for life-alterning unfairness.

Many sex crime allegations lack fundamental physical evidence you might see in a drug case, dwi case, or an assault case.  It makes sex cases harder to prove — and much, much harder to defend.  In addition, law enforcement are highly polished in how they present evidence and are able to spin neutral facts or facts in the accused favor against the accused.

Our clients and their families constantly ask us how or why law enforcement is so selective about the facts they choose to believe, why they are deaf to facts which contradict what they believe, and why they reject logic inconsistent with what they believe.  The answer is more simple than we’d like.  It isn’t because they’re bad people… It is because they’ve made up their mind.

Debating them about the facts can be like trying to convince someone they’re wrong about religion, politics or their favorite football team.  It’s not going to work often.  But the good news is we still live in America – and the police don’t get the ultimate decision on whether you or your loved one is guilty.

Fighting injustice to a jury is a hard thing to do.  It takes hard work, attention to detail, and mastering the facts better than your opponent.

*Jeremy Rosenthal is an attorney licensed in Texas and he is Board Certified in Criminal Law.  Nothing in this article should be considered legal advice.  For legal advice about any situation you should consult an attorney directly.


Handling Appeals Statewide

June 3, 2016

By Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal

(972) 369-0577

www.rosenthalwadas.com

Our office is in McKinney, Texas, but with the advent of efiling throughout the State of Texas, any lawyer can handle an appeal in any part of the State.

Efiling is a system where legal documents, pleadings and briefs of both the prosecutor and the defense can be submitted online.  Efiling is now available in all 254 counties in the State of Texas. Additionally we can review the record of any trial or legal proceeding because those transcripts can be emailed to us.

We can handle an appeal in any area of the state regardless of the cases length or complexity.  This allows us to help for cases where you might not be able to find an attorney willing to help you depending on where in Texas a  criminal trial was held.

Do We Need to Come To Where the Trial Was?

We may need to make a trip or two to the county where the trial was.  This could be to investigate certain facts of the case which may have been over-looked, or for brief hearings or to meet with essential parties.  We will need to come to the Court of Appeals in your district if the case is granted Oral Argument before the appeals court.

Why Rosenthal & Wadas for a Criminal Appeal?

We are a large Criminal Defense firm and there aren’t many firms like us around.  We have the resources to use a collaborative effort to have multiple lawyers assist on an appeal and we have more Board Certified Lawyers than any other Criminal Defense firm in Collin County.

*Jeremy Rosenthal is an attorney licensed to practice in the State of Texas and is Board Certified in Criminal Law.  Nothing in this article is intended to be legal advice.  For advice about any case you should contact an attorney directly.

 


When Non-Citizens Are Accused of Crime

June 2, 2016

By Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal

www.rosenthalwadas.com

(972) 369-0577

The intersection of criminal law and immigration is an important and complex one.  My office is in McKinney, Collin County, where we have strong and vibrant communities of people who are here from over-seas for work, family and opportunity.  It is not uncommon at all when such a person or their loved one is arrested and accused of a crime.

A mishandled criminal action against a non-citizen can lead to drastic consequences for that person as well as their loved ones in the event of a removal from the U.S. or denial of naturalization.

For the purposes of this discussion I mean “non-citizen” to mean anything less than being a fully naturalized U.S. Citizen regardless of whether they are a permanent resident, resident alien, green-card holder, or even undocumented or an illegal alien.

Also I’m going to keep this topic very general because this is very important stuff and I don’t want anyone making a decision when it comes to immigration without consulting an attorney.

Why Immigration and Criminal Issues are So Complex

We are dealing with two layers of laws — the Federal immigration system and the State or Federal criminal system.  Think of watching a high layer of clouds moving one direction and a much lower set of clouds moving a different direction.  It is complicated to know what it means for the big picture.

The Federal immigration system has classifications based on the individual’s status in the United States.  The Federal system also has different proceedings focused on things such as removal from the U.S. or denial of naturalization which may or may not be triggered by a criminal event.  Immigration proceedings, in general, are broader than the criminal proceeding in scope.

A state court prosecution, on the other hand, is treated identically as all others regardless of the person’s immigration status.  The laws, rights, and protections of State and Federal governments apply equally to anyone charged.  This means people are obviously expected to follow the law regardless of national origin and at the same time people accused are entitled to due process, counsel, and to be free from search and seizure regardless of national origin too.  The result of a State criminal case is not dependent at all on a person’s immigration status.

So This is Complex.  What Does That Mean for My Case?

It means your criminal lawyer has to know how to advise you as to what can happen on your immigration case.  The U.S. Supreme Court has even said so.  I specialize in criminal law — not immigration.  I’m qualified enough to give immigration advice but  I tend to be overly-cautious… so I’m generally insistent on making sure my clients have actually seen an immigration specialist as well.  I view it no differently than a medical problem where a person has multiple but related problems requiring doctors of different disciplines to confer and cross-check one another.

What are Some Examples of Problems Which Could Happen?

The most common problem is a non-citizen might plead guilty, no contest, or nolo contendre, to something which doesn’t seem like a big deal but triggers immigration consequences such as removal proceedings or denial of naturalization.  Sometimes a person’s immigration status puts them in a “must-win” situation.  This can take options such as plea bargaining off the table and can put the client in an all-or-nothing position where they can’t take advantage of a good plea offer or even a reduction of the charges.

The Bottom Line

Experienced lawyers are a must when dealing with criminal charges for someone less than a full citizen.  The carpenter’s rule is particularly relevant here, “measure twice, cut once.”

*Jeremy Rosenthal is an attorney licensed in the State of Texas.  Nothing in this article is intended to be legal advice.  He is Board Certified in Criminal Law.  Nothing in this article is intended to be legal advice.  For legal advice about this or any issue you should see an attorney directly.

 


How Do I Appeal A Criminal Case In Texas?

May 26, 2016

Criminal Defense Lawyer | DWI, Drug, Theft & Assault Charges

By Texas Criminal Defense Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal

(972)369-0577

www.rosenthalwadas.com

First of all, Appeals should not be attempted without a lawyer.  Also, this article is intended to be for class b misdemeanors and above… not for class c misdemeanors.  This blog only skims the surface of this extremely complex area.

We can handle appeals anywhere in the State of Texas through e-filing which is now in place.

What is an Appeal?

In America we get our day in Court.  We don’t, however, get our day in court over and over again until we win.   A common misconception about an appeal is that it is a do-over.  An appeal can generally be analogized more of an “instant replay” than it is a re-trial.

Appeals generally focus on specific things which happened during the trial such as improper court rulings, improper testimony or even improper conduct of the prosecutor (or even the defense lawyer)…

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