If you’re facing a gun charge in Texas, an experienced defense lawyer will be able to answer your questions, evaluate the strength of the state’s case against you, and protect your rights throughout the criminal process.
A gun charge in Texas can range from a minor violation to a serious felony, depending on the circumstances of your case.
Facing a Gun Charge? Your Next Steps
Make sure that you remain silent. You shouldn’t make any statements to police or other law enforcement officials unless your lawyer has given you the go-ahead to do so.
Why? Anything that you say can be used against you in court. Even if you choose to exercise your right to remain silent, nothing will happen until after your attorney has had an opportunity to speak with you and assess the strength of your case.
It also helps if you know how much time a potential sentence and conviction would carry.
Different gun crimes carry different penalties depending on their severity, so it’s important for you to know exactly what you’re up against when you’re accused of possessing or using a firearm illegally.
For example, unlawful carry in Texas, which is carrying a concealed handgun without a license, is punishable by up to twelve months in prison and a fine that could be as high as $4,000.
Let your gun charge lawyer know if this is your first offense or if you’ve had prior offenses in the past, and be honest, because any prior criminal record can greatly affect your case.
Check Criminal Records in Texas and Gather Evidence
You need to make sure that your record doesn’t contain any errors or false information. If there is any error on your record, then the court will not take you or your lawyer seriously.
It’s also important to check if there are any other cases pending against you that could affect your current gun charge in any way. When you do this, your lawyer can plan accordingly.
Find people who were there at the time of the arrest and ask them to provide testimony. Witnesses can provide valuable information about how the crime happened and whether someone else was involved.
They can also attest to your character, so if someone is testifying against you, you have a good rebuttal for any attacks on your virtue.
Your attorney can guide you through this process so that everything is done correctly and any questions about evidence or procedures are answered in advance of the trial date.
If possible, try to gather evidence before going to court or talking to police officers about the charges against you because once your case goes public, it becomes increasingly difficult to gather information without raising suspicion among other people involved in the investigation.
Two Types of Evidence When You Face a Gun Charge
There are two basic types of evidence: direct and circumstantial. Direct evidence is something you can see or hear. It’s real evidence. It could be the gun itself, fingerprints on the gun, or DNA on the trigger.
Circumstantial evidence is proof that something happened without directly seeing or hearing it happen. It’s based on circumstances surrounding an event that suggests what happened, such as an eyewitness account.
Gathering direct evidence is more straightforward than gathering circumstantial evidence. If a witness testifies that he saw you shoot someone in cold blood, that’s direct evidence against you in your criminal trial for murder.
The witness testimony provides direct proof of guilt, and no amount of cross-examination or other defense tactics can change it.
But what if there are no witnesses to the gun charge you face? What if there was no surveillance video or audio recording? What if there were no fingerprints? This is when circumstantial, or even forensic, evidence comes into play.
Help from a Defense Attorney
There’s a chance that your lawyer will be able to get your case dismissed on a technicality or get you a lighter sentence through a plea deal, but you have to make sure you provide him or her with all the details.
When you face a gun charge in Texas and aren’t sure what the outcome will be, it’s important to be as prepared as possible. Contact Hoeller McLaughlin PLLC online or call 817-334-7900 to discuss your case.