Criminal Defense Attorneys
in Dallas, Texas

The immediate and long-term consequences of a criminal conviction can be devastating. Depending on the seriousness of the offense, a criminal charge can jeopardize your professional reputation, quality of life, eligibility for public benefits, and more. It’s natural to feel overwhelmed in the face of a criminal accusation in Dallas or anywhere else in Texas.

If you have been arrested or indicted for a crime, it is crucial that you retain an aggressive—and compassionate—Texas criminal defense attorney immediately. At Madson Castello Law, we’re dedicated to providing highly-personalized legal counsel and vigorous representation to clients facing criminal charges. As former high-level prosecutors in Dallas County, we can evaluate and investigate all of the facts of your case and craft an effective defense strategy to maximize your chances of the best possible outcome. We will strive to uphold your rights and provide you with a path forward.

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Criminal Charges in Texas

A criminal charge can be described as a formal accusation made by a governmental authority—the law enforcement, police, or a public prosecutor—indicating that an individual has committed an offense or violated a law. In Texas, criminal charges may be categorized into misdemeanors and felonies.

Misdemeanor

A misdemeanor is a criminal charge in Texas that involves non-violent or less serious offenses compared to a felony. Misdemeanors may be punishable by jail time, fines, community service, license suspension, probation, and court costs. Depending on the severity of the offense, misdemeanors are categorized into:

  • Class A: This is the most serious misdemeanor charge. Examples of Class A misdemeanors include family violence, assault, marijuana possession, second DWI, and unlawful carrying of a weapon.
  • Class B: Examples of Class B misdemeanors include first DWI, shoplifting, criminal trespassing, and reckless driving.
  • Class C: This is the least serious misdemeanor charge. There is no jail time. Examples of Class C misdemeanors include DUI as a minor, public intoxication, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Felony

A felony is the most serious type of criminal charge in Texas. Felonies usually attract harsher penalties, and in some severe cases, a felony charge may result in imprisonment without the possibility of parole. Depending on the seriousness of the crime, felonies are categorized into:

  • Capital Felony, including capital murder.
  • First Degree Felony, including murder, aggravated sexual assault, aggravated kidnapping, and aggravated robbery.
  • Second Degree Felony, including aggravated assault, manslaughter, intoxication manslaughter, and marijuana possession.
  • Third Degree Felony, including intoxication assault, third DWI, evading arrest with a vehicle, and possession of a firearm as a felon.
  • State Jail Felony, including DWI with a child passenger and drug possession (<1 gram)

According to statistics from the Crime in Texas report, there were 805,879 and 782,974 total arrests statewide in 2019 and 2020, respectively. If you or someone close to you has recently been arrested and charged with a crime, you need to reach out to a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer as soon as you can. Your attorney can walk you through the Texas criminal court process and examine your case from every angle.

Texas Criminal Court Process

The criminal court process in Texas involves the following phases:

Investigation. Once the police receive a report of a crime or arrive at the crime scene, an investigation will be conducted. Criminal investigations may include interviewing witnesses and performing searches.

Arrest. Law enforcement officers may arrest a person for allegedly committing a crime or breaking the law. Within 48 hours of making an arrest, the police must take you before a judge for an initial appearance.

Arraignment. Arraignment is when an alleged offender is formally charged. The judge will make you aware of your rights and determine whether or not to grant bail. As an accused, you have the rights to:

  • Remain silent
  • Consult with a lawyer
  • Have an attorney present while you’re being questioned.

Pretrial. The pretrial involves all court processes or hearings that take place before a trial. These may include court appearances, bond reduction hearings, motion to suppress, discovery, and plea negotiations. Your case may move to the trial phase if it isn’t resolved during the pretrial proceedings.

Trial. In Texas, trials may be jury trials or trials by judge (bench trials). A defendant will have the right to choose between a jury trial and a bench trial. The jury consists of 12 members of the community. The judge or jury will listen to the arguments of the prosecution and defense counsel and determine whether the defendant is guilty or innocent. If you’re found guilty, the judge will determine your punishment.

Appeal. If you believe you were wrongly convicted or sentenced unfairly, you may be eligible to appeal your case by filing an appeal to a higher court.

An experienced Texas criminal defense lawyer can help you navigate the criminal court process, outline a strong defense for your case, and increase your chances of the most favorable outcome.

Work With a Knowledgeable Criminal Defense Attorney

At Madson Castello Law, we have devoted our careers to defending and representing the best interests of clients. With our in-depth understanding of Texas law, our skilled team will help you navigate the Texas criminal justice system and represent you diligently at every phase of the legal process. No matter what brings you to our office, we hope to leverage our long-standing relationships with local law enforcement to advocate for your legal rights.

Criminal Defense Attorneys
Serving Dallas, Texas

If you’re facing criminal charges in Dallas or anywhere else in the state, don’t face them alone. Contact Madson Castello Law today to schedule a one-on-one case evaluation. We’re not only attorneys who fight aggressively, but attorneys who care deeply. We’re proud to represent clients in Dallas, Texas, and throughout North Texas, including McKinney, Denton, and Fort Worth.