Bedford Felony Crimes Lawyer
Facing felony charges in Bedford, Texas, is a serious matter that can result in harsh penalties and other repercussions if you’re convicted. You could receive considerable jail time along with hefty fines, and the whole ordeal will invariably affect your life and future.
Defending yourself against felony charges in Bedford requires the skills and resources of a Bedford felony crimes lawyer. An attorney can advise you of your rights, help in preparing a compelling defense, and represent you throughout the process to help you get the most favorable outcome possible.
The Bedford felony crimes attorneys at Fulgham Law Firm are here for you during this difficult and uncertain time. We have extensive experience defending clients against a wide range of felony charges in Bedford, and we can review your case at no cost.
Contact us today for a free consultation regarding your defense options and learn how we can help you get the positive results you seek.
How Fulgham Law Firm Can Help Defend You Against Felony Charges in Bedford
Hiring an attorney is crucial if you’re facing felony charges in Bedford or any other location in Texas. The criminal defense attorneys at Fulgham Law Firm have more than 70 years of collective legal experience, and we have successfully handled hundreds of criminal cases for clients in Bedford and the surrounding areas.
We can defend you against felony charges in Bedford through:
- In-depth legal knowledge: Our attorneys have a deep understanding of criminal law, court procedures, and the specific laws relevant to your case. We can assess the evidence against you, identify legal issues, and determine the best course of action.
- Protection of rights: An attorney from our firm will ensure that your constitutional rights are protected throughout the legal process. This includes your right to remain silent, the right to legal counsel, and protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.
- Investigation: We can conduct an independent investigation into the charges against you. This may involve gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, and reviewing police reports to identify any weaknesses in the prosecution’s case.
- Negotiation with prosecutors: Our attorneys can engage in plea negotiations with the prosecution to potentially reduce charges, secure a favorable plea deal, or pursue alternative sentencing options.
- Court representation: If your case goes to trial, an attorney from our law firm can represent you in court. We will present your defense, cross-examine witnesses, and argue legal points to the judge and jury.
- Sentencing advocacy: If you are convicted, your attorney can advocate on your behalf during the sentencing phase, presenting mitigating factors that may influence the severity of your sentence.
Felony charges are serious, and the consequences can have a lasting impact on your life. It’s important to retain a qualified criminal defense attorney from Fulgham Law Firm as soon as possible to ensure the best possible outcome for your case. Contact us today for a no-cost case review.
What Are Common Felony Charges and Their Penalties in Texas?
In Texas, felony charges are categorized into different degrees, ranging from the least severe (state jail felony) to the most serious (capital felony). Each degree of felony carries its own set of penalties, including potential prison sentences and fines. Here are common felony charges in Texas along with their penalties:
State Jail Felony
- Examples: Theft of property valued between $2,500 and $30,000, credit card abuse, drug possession (certain amounts).
- Penalties: 180 days to 2 years in a state jail facility, and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Examples: Burglary of a habitation, third-offense DWI (Driving While Intoxicated), certain drug offenses.
- Penalties: 2 to 10 years in prison, and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Examples: Aggravated assault, robbery, certain sexual offenses.
- Penalties: 2 to 20 years in prison, and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Examples: Aggravated robbery, aggravated kidnapping, certain drug offenses (large quantities).
- Penalties: 5 to 99 years or life in prison, and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Example: Capital murder.
- Penalty: Life imprisonment without parole or the death penalty.
It’s important to note that Texas law allows for the possibility of parole in certain cases, and sentences can vary based on factors such as prior criminal history and the presence of aggravating or mitigating circumstances.
Additionally, some offenses may have enhanced penalties based on specific factors, such as the use of a deadly weapon during the commission of a crime.
Legal representation is crucial if you’re facing felony charges in Texas. An experienced criminal defense attorney from Fulgham Law Firm can help you understand the specific charges against you, build a strong defense, and fight for you throughout the legal process to improve your odds of getting positive results.
What’s the Criminal Justice Process for Felonies in Bedford?
The criminal justice process for felonies in Bedford generally follows a series of stages.
While the specific procedures may vary slightly depending on the details of the case, here is a general outline of the process:
- Arrest: The process typically begins with an arrest by law enforcement officers. This may occur based on the observation of a crime, the issuance of an arrest warrant, or an indictment by a grand jury.
- Booking: After the arrest, the individual is taken to the police station for booking. This involves recording personal information, taking fingerprints and photographs, and conducting a background check.
- Initial Appearance: The arrested person is brought before a magistrate or judge for an initial appearance. During this stage, the charges are read, and the accused is informed of their rights. The judge may also decide on bail.
- Bail Hearing: If the accused is eligible for bail, a bail hearing is conducted to determine the amount of bail and any conditions for release. Bail allows the defendant to remain free while awaiting trial, provided they comply with specified conditions.
- Grand Jury or Preliminary Hearing: For felony charges, the case may go to a grand jury for an indictment. The grand jury reviews evidence presented by the prosecution and determines whether there is enough evidence to proceed to trial. In some cases, a preliminary hearing may be held instead.
- Arraignment: The accused is formally presented with the charges during the arraignment. They enter a plea, which can be “guilty,” “not guilty,” or “no contest.” The court may set additional hearings and deadlines.
- Discovery: Both the prosecution and defense engage in the discovery process, exchanging information and evidence related to the case.
- Pretrial Motions: The defense may file motions to challenge evidence or legal issues. The court will hear and rule on these motions.
- Negotiations and Plea Bargaining: The prosecution and defense may engage in plea negotiations to resolve the case without going to trial. This could result in a plea agreement with reduced charges or penalties.
- Trial: If a plea agreement is not reached, the case proceeds to trial. The prosecution presents evidence, witnesses are called, and the defense has the opportunity to present its case. The judge or jury then renders a verdict.
- Sentencing: If the accused is found guilty, a separate sentencing hearing is conducted. The judge considers various factors before imposing a sentence, which may include imprisonment, fines, probation, or other penalties.
- Appeals: If there are legal grounds to appeal, such as judicial misconduct or procedural errors, the convicted individual may request to appeal the verdict or sentence.
The specific procedures and timelines can vary, but it’s important to have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side throughout the process. If you or someone you know is facing felony charges in Bedford, Texas, reach out to a Bedford felony crimes attorney from Fulgham Law Firm for legal counsel.
What Should I Do if I’m Arrested on Felony Charges in Bedford?
If police arrest you on felony charges in Bedford, protect your rights so you receive the best possible results.
Here are some important actions to consider:
- Stay calm and collected. Resisting arrest or arguing with law enforcement officers can escalate the situation and potentially lead to additional charges.
- Law enforcement officers should have read your Miranda rights when they arrested you. This involves informing you that you have the right to remain silent, and anything you say can be used against you in court. Politely invoke your right to remain silent and avoid making statements or admissions without your attorney present.
- You have the right to an attorney. Politely but firmly request to have an attorney present during any questioning.
- You have the right to refuse searches of your person, belongings, or property without a warrant. If law enforcement asks for your consent to search, it’s generally advisable to politely decline.
- You should provide basic identification information, such as your name and address, but avoid volunteering additional information without the presence of your attorney.
- You have the right to make a phone call. Contact a family member, friend, or attorney as soon as possible. Be mindful of what you say during the call, as it may be recorded.
- Ask the arresting officers about the charges against you. Understanding the charges is essential for making informed decisions and communicating effectively with your attorney.
- If you are subjected to interrogation, continue to assert your right to have an attorney present. Do not answer questions without your attorney present.
- If possible, take mental notes of the circumstances surrounding your arrest, including the time, location, and any potential witnesses. This information may be valuable for your defense.
- Refrain from discussing your case with other inmates, as these conversations can be used against you. Confidentiality may be compromised in a jail setting.
Hire an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney
As soon as possible, you should retain an experienced criminal defense attorney. An attorney from Fulgham Law Firm can provide legal advice, guide you through the process, and devise a strong defense strategy.
Can I Expunge a Felony Charge from My Criminal Record in Texas?
In Texas, an expunction (also known as expungement) is generally available for certain criminal records, but there are limitations, especially when it comes to felony charges.
Expunction allows an individual to have their criminal record erased or sealed, as if the arrest or charge never occurred. However, Texas law has specific eligibility criteria for expunction, and not all felony charges qualify.
Here are some key points to consider:
- Eligibility for Expunction: Generally, you may be eligible for expunction if:
- Your case was dismissed.
- The grand jury returned a no-bill decision on your case, which means they decided not to indict you based on the evidence (or lack thereof).
- You were acquitted (found not guilty) at trial.
- You were convicted but later pardoned.
- Waiting Periods: There is usually a waiting period before you can apply for a felony expunction in Texas—which is typically three years in most cases. Certain exceptions may apply to your case, but you need to speak with an attorney for specific advice regarding the waiting period for your case.
- Convictions: Texas law is more restrictive when it comes to expunging records of convictions. In most cases, you cannot expunge a felony conviction from your record. There are limited exceptions, such as if you were later pardoned or if you were convicted of a qualifying misdemeanor but subsequently determined to be factually innocent.
- Non-Disclosure Orders: If you do not qualify for expunction, you may explore the possibility of obtaining a non-disclosure order for certain misdemeanor and felony convictions. A non-disclosure order seals your criminal record from public view, but certain entities, such as law enforcement and some government agencies, may still have access to the information.
Seek Legal Advice
Each case is different, and it’s crucial to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney to determine your eligibility for expunction or non-disclosure. An attorney from Fulgham Law Firm can help you understand the specific circumstances of your case and guide you through the legal process.
Contact a Bedford Felony Crimes Attorney Today
Considering all that’s at stake. you must do all you can to defend yourself against felony charges in Bedford. At Fulgham Law Firm, our Bedford criminal defense attorneys have the knowledge, skills, and resources to help with all aspects of the process. We can fight zealously to protect your rights and help you achieve the most favorable outcome possible.