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Texas’ prisons were dangerous places before COVID-19 swept through them in 2020 and 2021. The coronavirus killed hundreds, including some inmates who should have been released months earlier. A new report has found at least 18 people who had already been granted parole died with COVID-19 before they could leave prison. The new study from the University of Texas at Austin’s Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs highlights unnecessary deaths in lock-ups during the pandemic. It describes how a “troubling number of people” in Texas prisons and jails are dying in custody before they even leave the prison gates.…
Mass shootings are tragic, high-profile, and often chaotic. The pressure is on police to make arrests quickly after shootings. On occasions, law enforcement officers make mistakes. Associated Press recently reported police have dropped charges against two juveniles after investigators identified a different shooter in an incident in downtown Austin that left a tourist dead and more than a dozen others injured. The shooting on June 12 on 6th Street followed a dispute between two groups of teens from the city of Killeen, according to media reports.  The shootings claimed the life of 25-year-old Douglas John Kantor. Police initially arrested Jeremiah…
When someone is prosecuted for assault, they will often claim they were acting in self-defense against another aggressor. In fact, it’s quite common to see self-defense in news stories about people accused of seriously injuring or even killing another person. For example, in so-called “stand your ground” cases in which someone kills an intruder, the defendant may say they feared for their life and were forced to use a weapon to protect themselves. If you’ve been charged with assault, it’s important to know that the defense of self-defense can be more complicated than you might realize. Proving you acted in…
Inmates have fought in the courts against excess heat in Texas prisons for years. Now TV host John Oliver has raised the profile of the deadly situation facing inmates. The Last Week Tonight host kicked off a show this month by stating that “heat in prisons is a big problem.” He said more than half of prisons lack air conditioning in some of the hottest states in the country. Oliver singled out Texas where almost three-quarters of lock-ups lack air conditioning.  The host pointed out nearly 40% of inmates suffer from a chronic condition that can be exacerbated by the…
Being prosecuted for a criminal offense is a deeply troubling situation for anyone to find themselves in, but college students, whose professional careers have not yet even begun, have additional pressures to consider. Many institutions of higher education may expel or suspend students with criminal convictions against them, the consequences of which may affect the student for decades to come. Universities and other educational institutions take alleged behavior that reflects poorly on their reputation very seriously. Dallas-area college students charged with any criminal offense should consult a Texas legal college student defense legal expert to protect the safety of their…
By : Clint Broden Dallas Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer While criminal cases in federal court are not often dismissed (unlike state court where dismissals happen more frequently), dismissals do happen.  That is why it is important that, if you are charged with an offense in federal court, you hire an attorney with significant experience representing criminal clients in federal court.  At Broden & Mickelsen we have handled almost 1,000 criminal cases. I recently represented a defendant charged in federal court with failure to register as a sex offender under the Federal Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA).  18 U.S.C.…
By: Federal & Texas Money Laundering Criminal Defense Lawyer – Mick Mickelsen, Dallas When one hears the phrase “money laundering” one usually thinks of some activity by which illegal proceeds, such as that earned from selling narcotics, are made to appear as if they were derived from legitimate income. Most people also tend to think the crime of money laundering is much less serious than the underlying criminal activity from which it is derived. However, under Federal law, money laundering encompasses more activity than what people would assume, and the penalties for money laundering can be as severe as the…
A federal case in Texas illustrates how the internet has widened the scope of hate crime laws in the United States. A man from Dallas pleaded guilty this month to one hate crime stemming from a scheme that targeted gay men on the dating app Grindr. Daniel Jenkins, 22, pleaded guilty to one hate crime count, kidnapping, carjacking, conspiracy, and one count of using a firearm during an act of violence, the news channel CBS DFW reported. He is the last of four defendants to plead guilty under the scheme, according to the channel. The U.S. Department of Justice accuses…
A court has upheld Texas’ recently enacted “revenge porn” law that can land offenders in jail for up to a year. The state’s so-called “revenge porn” law makes it a misdemeanor to post somebody’s intimate photographs online without their consent. This month, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals ruled that the law does not violate the First Amendment. The ruling by the state’s highest criminal court overrules a 2018 decision by a lower court that the law was unconstitutional, the Texas Tribune reported. The law enacted in 2015 made posting someone’s intimate photographs to the internet without their permission a…
Texas is on course to become the latest state to lift gun permitting rules after Republican lawmakers reached a deal this month. The bill will allow people to carry handguns in public without a license or training, clearing the path for Texas to become the latest state to remove penalties for carrying a gun without a permit. The Dallas Morning News noted the deal would keep many changes in the legislation made by the Senate intact, including tougher sentences for felons who illegally carry guns and free online gun-safety courses. The revised version of House Bill 1927 still requires a…