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  1. #1
    texas711 is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    Criminal Trespass - First Offense - Texas

    My boyfriend and I wondered on to a rancher's land one day to target shoot. The land was not marked, it was out in the country, and there was no sign and a broken down fence.

    Long story short, we were contacted by the Warden's the next morning because the rancher got our license plate. They made us fill out a statement and we went on our way. I contacted them a couple of weeks later and they told us they were certain they convinced the land owner to drop the charges. And that was the end of it. So we thought..

    7 months later my boyfriend got pulled over for a warning and the officer proceeded to tell him he had a warrant out for his arrest. Turns out we both do. We went up to the county attorney's office, they said we both have to pay a $400 fine and 6 months probation. And it's a class b misdemeanor charge. What exactly does a class b misdemeanor mean for us? This is both of our first time criminal trespass offenses.


    ***UPDATE***
    Now I go home and contact a local Attorney. He tells me his flat rate for accepting a case is 1500 per case. I then call the courthouse for the case number, and call him back. He then offers to call the court for me to get some basic info about the charges and calls me back with "I feel very confident that with my relationship with the County Attorney, I can get you Deferred Adjudication..60 days. Charges dropped after completion...no record." He told me his flat rate was 1500...per case...kind of high for what seems to be a few hours of pressing palms, slapping backs and paper pushing.

    1)Is is a good idea to go forward with this with no guarantee of Deferred?

    2)Why is it that an Attorney can get this far in 10 minutes but when I asked the County Attorney I get nothing? Is the legal profession a self perpetuating industry? ie Lawyers only doing favors for other Lawyers so that they can get paid by some poor sap with no choice. Sorry for being harsh, I support the profession

    3) Is there a better cheaper way of getting the same result?

    4) What are the long term repercussions of having a Class B? on your record? Job applications, credit history etc.?
  2. #2
    CavemanLawyer is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    1,169
    In Texas, a fenced area is considered notice that you do not have the right to enter, even if the fence is incomplete and broken in certain areas.

    A class B misdemeanor conviction stays on your record for life. It will show up on either a local Texas criminal history check (TCIC) or a national check (NCIC.) It is far from a major offense but it could affect employment. If you have no criminal history than you definitely don't this conviction on your record.

    How easily an attorney can get charges reduced or dismissed based solely on their connections is something that is going to vary from attorney to attorney and region to region. Obviously it doesn't typically work like that, but there are exceptions.

    You may want to shop for a cheaper attorney but that is a pretty average rate. I'd say that $1500 is worth it to avoid the conviction, but you could eventually get the same deal representing yourself. Its impossible to predict these things. All I can say is that having an attorney represent you is never a bad idea, if you can afford it.

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