GUN CRIMES & VIOLENT CRIMES

Facing Violent Crime or Gun Crime Charges in Dallas, Texas?

Crimes involving violence and/or guns are serious offenses that pose a high risk of resulting in serious penalties in Texas. The majority of these crimes are often elevated to aggravated offenses, raising crimes from a misdemeanor to felony charges. The punishment for felony charges can result in years behind bars and thousands in fines.

Contact Gallian Firm at (214) 432-8860 today if you are facing charges for a violent or gun crime in the Dallas area. Your career, family, and freedom are at risk. Gregg Gallian understands the stress and emotional turmoil that these accusations can cause and will work hard to clear your name.

Reach out today for a free consultation and free case review to allow Gallian Firm to begin building your case.

What Are Violent Crimes and/or Gun Crimes?

Violent crimes are allegations that an individual used intimidation, threats, to attempt to or cause physical harm to another individual.

Examples of Violent Crimes Include:

Any crime that involves a weapon, including a gun, is also considered a violent crime. Weapons are not limited to firearms. These charges could include any item that has the potential to cause serious injuries, debilitating harm, or death.

It is important to understand the differences in these charges to prepare yourself for potential outcomes in your case.

What Are the Penalties for Violent Crimes and/or Gun Crimes?

gun crime defense

The prosecution will push for a conviction and the harshest penalties for any violent crime. Oftentimes, clients face several charges in these cases, increasing the potential for harsh penalties.

Penalties May Include:

  • Years in Prison
  • Thousands in Fines
  • Restitution
  • Loss of Child Custody
  • Protective Orders

In addition, the majority of violent crimes are felony charges. Individuals face loss of employment, housing, and educational opportunities if convicted of a felony.

How Does Texas Define Kidnapping?

Kidnapping is defined as when an individual intentionally abducts another person with the intent to have lawful control.

Kidnapping is a 3rd Degree Felony charge under Texas law. This carries a penalty of 2 to 10 years of imprisonment.

If force, deception, or intimidation are used this charge can be raised to aggravated kidnapping.

Examples of Aggravated Kidnapping Include:

  •       Kidnapping for Ransom
  •       Use As Shield
  •       Physical or Sexual Abuse Occurs
  •       Use or Exhibition of a Deadly Weapon

Aggravated kidnapping is a 1st-degree felony. This increases the penalty to 5 to 99 years behind bars.

What is the Difference Between Assault and Aggravated Assault?

aggravated gun crime assault

Aggravated assault is a more severe type of assault charge that carries harsher penalties. This determination is based on the circumstances of the charges and the severity of the injuries that the victim sustained.

Circumstances of Aggravated Assault Could Include:

  • Assault Against a Public Servant
  • Assault Performed by a Public Servant
  • Retaliation Against a Witness or Informant
  • Assault with a Motor Vehicle
Aggravated assault charges can also result if a deadly weapon is exhibited or used when the crime was committed. There are other situations that can result in aggravated assault allegations, including spousal violence. Visit the family violence page for more information about these circumstances. Penalties for all aggravated crimes are increased to felony charges.

How Does Texas Define Sexual Assault?

Sexual assault is defined as any non-consensual activity that involves contact and/or penetration of the mouth, anus, and/ or sexual organs.

What Is Aggravated Sexual Assault?

Sexual assault is raised to aggravated sexual assault when coercion, force, violence, or threats of violence are used to commit the crime. There are also other circumstances in which these charges may be raised to aggravated.

Sexual assault is raised to aggravated sexual assault when coercion, force, violence, or threats of violence are used to commit the crime. There are also other circumstances in which these charges may be raised to aggravated.

Sexual Assault Could Include:

  • Penetration of the anus or sexual organs of another individual.
  • Accusations that the defendant penetrated another person’s mouth with their sexual organ.
  • Accusations that the defendant causes another person’s sexual organ to penetrate their mouth, anus, or sexual organ.

Sexual assault is a 2nd-degree felony and can result in anywhere from 2 to 20 years behind bars and a fine of $10,000.

Aggravated Sexual Assault May Include:

  • Intentional Impairment of the Victim
  • Sexual Assault on an Unconscious Person
  • The Victim is Unaware of Assault
  • Victim Fears Additional Harm

Aggravated sexual assault is a 1st-degree felony conviction that may result in 5 to 99 in prison and $10,000 in fines.

USING Power and Influence IN SEXUAL ASSAULT

Sexual assault can also be defined as aggravated when an individual uses power and/or influence over another person to commit the crime. This involves the exploitation of an individual’s physical and/or emotional dependency on the assailant.

These Circumstance May Include Allegations Against a:

  • Public Servant
  • Clergyman
  • Employee of a Facility
  • Caregiver
  • Coach
  • Tutor
  • Healthcare Provider

Healthcare providers include any medical worker that cares for a patient, including doctors, registered nurses, chiropractors, counselors, and physical therapists.

What Weapons Are Illegal in Texas?

Texas law defines crimes that involve weapons as offenses against public health and safety. A weapon is an instrument that is specifically designed to inflict serious bodily harm. There are several weapons that are illegal for anyone to possess. Examples of Illegal Weapons Include:
  • Homemade Guns
  • Explosives
  • Brass Knuckles
  • Rifle with Barrels Modified to Less Than 16 Inches
  • Shotguns Modified to Less Than 26 Inches
  • Silencers
  • Armor Piercing Ammunition
Possession of these weapons is a class C misdemeanor charge. When charged alone, this results in a $500 fine.

What Is Considered Unlawful Carrying of a Weapon?

This is the allegation that an individual was carrying a weapon that they are not permitted to possess, in an illegal location, and/or during criminal circumstances.

Unlawful Carrying of a Weapon Pertains If:

  • The individual is in possession of a firearm and under the age of 21.
  • The individual has previous felony convictions.
  • The individual displays the firearm in plain view in public (without a holster).
  • The individual carries while intoxicated.

Lawful carrying of a weapon is a Class A misdemeanor that, if convicted, can result in up to 1 year in jail and $4000 in fines.

There are locations that firearms are prohibited even by those who are legally permitted to carry them.

Prohibited Locations Include:

  • Schools
  • Courthouses
  • Judicial Buildings
  • Racetracks
  • Airports
  • Places of Execution
  • Polling Stations
  • Correctional Facilities
  • Hospitals
  • Amusement Parks

This charge can be raised to a 3rd-degree felony depending on the location that the unlawful possession occurs. This could result in up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

What is Considered Unlawful Discharge of a Weapon?

According to Texas law, it is illegal for an individual to discharge a weapon within city limits if the population is greater than 100,000 people. The court has interpreted this law to describe any individual who discharges a weapon in a highly-populated area, causing unnecessary panic amongst the public. This does not apply to cases where a weapon is accidentally discharged. To unlawfully discharge a weapon, an individual must intentionally shoot a weapon during unsafe and reckless circumstances.

What are Crimes Against Property?

Crimes against property involve damage against a building, habitation, vehicle, or other property.

Property Is Defined As:

  • Real Property, Tangible or Intangible
  • Personal Property Severed from Land
  • Documents, Including Money

Any reckless or intentional destruction of another person’s property is a crime against property. These charges include arson and burglary of a habitation.

What Is Arson?

Arson is the allegation that an individual intentionally starts a fire, or explosion, with the intention to damage property. It is irrelevant whether the fire continues to burn after it is ignited. There are several circumstances that can lead to charges of arson.

Start a fire for Insurance

Starting a fire to a property that the defendant know is insured is a crime under all circumstances.

starting a fire on Open Land

Starting a fire even on open land, including vegetation, within city limits constitutes arson. There are open land exceptions for controlled fires outside of town limits.

fire and Manufacturing Illicit Drugs

Individuals who unintentionally start a fire while committing the crime of manufacturing illegal drugs can also face arson charges.

starting a fire due to Recklessness

A person can face arson charges for starting any fire that puts nearby buildings, property, or people at risk of harm.

Texas considers arson a serious crime with most convictions resulting in 2nd-degree felony charges. This can result in 2 to 20 years behind bars and $10,00.

Arson charges may be raised to a 1st-degree felony if another person is harmed or killed as a result of the fire and/or explosion. If convicted of a 1st-degree felony the defendant could face 5 to 99 years in prison

What is the Difference Between Robbery and Burglary of a Habitation?

Robbery and burglary are similar crimes that can take place simultaneously. Robbery is a crime that takes place during a burglary. Robbery involves using fear, force, or intimidation to commit theft. Burglary is simply entering a building or habitation with the intent to commit a crime. Read more about what constitutes burglary of habitation here.

How is Deadly Conduct Defined?

Deadly conduct is the allegation that an individual’s reckless behavior puts another person in imminent danger of serious bodily harm.

An individual faces charges of deadly conduct when a weapon is discharged recklessly, potentially harming others.

This May Include Discharging a Fireman At:

  • An Individual(s)
  • A Building
  • A Habitation
  • A Vehicle

Charges may also be faced if an individual points a weapon at another person, whether or not they believe the gun to be loaded.

How Long Will I Spend in Prison for Violent Crimes and/or Gun Crimes?

gun violation

A conviction for a violent crime and/or gun crime has devasting consequences on both your professional and personal life. The penalties for these convictions range from misdemeanor offenses, resulting in a year behind bars and 10,000 in fines, to harsh felony offenses.

Felony charges can result in anywhere from 2 years to 99 years in prison and $10,000 in fines. Once an individual is charged as a felon, they also suffer personal and financial consequences. Many employers will not hire a convicted felon. This results in career limitations and financial struggles.

A conviction for a violent crime and/or gun crime has devasting consequences on both your professional and personal life. The penalties for these convictions range from misdemeanor offenses, resulting in a year behind bars and 10,000 in fines, to harsh felony offenses. Felony charges can result in anywhere from 2 years to 99 years in prison and $10,000 in fines. Once an individual is charged as a felon, they also suffer personal and financial consequences. Many employers will not hire a convicted felon. This results in career limitations and financial struggles.

What Defense Strategies Can a Lawyer Utilize Against a Violent Crime?

Which defense strategy will be most effective for proving your innocence, or at minimum, lessening charges will depend on your unique case. There are several methods that a criminal defense lawyer can use in court to help clients avoid serious charges.

Denial Of Crime

The most standard defense for any crime is the denial that the crime was committed by the defendant. The prosecution requires evidence that proves without any reasonable doubt that the defendant did commit the crime. There is no case and the jury will not convict an individual of murder if there is no irrefutable evidence.

INSANITY

An individual who is not mentally competent cannot be charged with knowingly and intentionally committing a crime. The insanity plea is not easy to execute and generally not the best line of defense. First, it would need to be determined that the defendant is not competent to stand trial.

Next, a mental health professional would be required to evaluate the defendant to determine the exact reason for this incompetency. If the mental health professional determines that the defendant is not competent to stand trial, the prosecution will have the option to agree with or to challenge the expert’s findings. A competency trial will take place if the prosecution disagrees.

At a minimum, the defendant will be sent to a mental health facility if they are deemed incompetent. At which point they will be treated to restore competency or deemed unrestorable.

It is difficult to successfully execute an insanity defense because a lawyer would need to prove that the defendant did not know that the illegal activity was wrong at the time the crime was committed.

Lack Of Intent

With the exception of manslaughter and recklessness, the majority of crimes require the defendant to commit them knowingly and intentionally to be convicted.

To be convicted of murder, the prosecution must prove that the defendant intentionally and deliberately killed an individual. The crime is not murder if the actions that led to the death were accidental or reckless. Lack of intent to kill is a plausible defense that can potentially lessen charges.

Self-Defense

Self-defense is a potential defense that can be used for the complete justification of several types of violent crimes. Although effective, self-defense can be difficult to prove, requiring several elements to be present.

Self-Defense requires:

  • The Victim was Unprovoked
  • Minimum Force Used
  • No Crime was Occurring
  • Necessary for Own Safety

However, Texas is a stand your ground state. This means that self-defense murders are generally justifiable when an individual invades the defendant’s home or vehicle.

Self-defense is commonly used in murder, assault, manslaughter, and domestic violence cases effectively.

Self-defense can also be a permissible defense if the defendant is protecting another individual from serious harm, including kidnapping, murder, robbery, or sexual assault.

What If the Police Are Questioning My Family?

Do not discuss any details of the case with anyone, including friends, family, and/or law enforcement. These are serious allegations. Utilizing your right to remain silent is crucial to the success of your case and your freedom.

Law enforcement will use any information, including attempts to defend yourself, against you in court. Friends and family will also be questioned by law enforcement. Protect them by not sharing any information about your case.

Let your lawyer know immediately if you have unintentionally spoken with anyone about your case.

Do I Need to Hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer for a Violent Crime or Gun Crime?

Hiring a reputable and experienced criminal defense lawyer is the key to lessening charges and avoiding the harshest penalties. Gregg Gallian is a former federal and state prosecuting attorney, meaning that he understands Texas law, and knows the best way to proceed in your case. Mr. Gallian will review the circumstances of your case, including the testimonies and evidence against you, and use this information to build a solid defense.

Seek legal representation as soon as possible to allow Gallian Firm to begin building your case. At your free consultation, Gallian will provide honest answers regarding the expectations in your case.

Why Is Gallian Firm the Best Choice for Criminal Defense?

Gregg Gallian has the extensive knowledge and experience required to generate the best legal defense in your case. Gallian has helped hundreds of clients in the Dallas area avoid prison time and move forward with their lives.

It is never too late to contact Gregg Gallian for a free case review, even if you have already hired a less competent attorney. You deserve the best legal defense and have a responsibility to yourself, your family, and your future to choose an experienced lawyer for representation in the courtroom.

Seek legal representation as soon as possible to allow Gallian Firm to begin building your case. At your free consultation, Gallian will provide honest answers regarding the expectations in your case.

How Do I Schedule a Consultation?

Gregg Gallian has a track record of success and is not afraid to fight for his clients in the courtroom. Put the toughest criminal defense lawyer in your corner. Contact Gregg Gallian at Gallian Firm today for a case review and evaluation. You can reach the firm at 214-432-8860.

schedule your free case review

Christopher E.
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I worked with Gregg Gallian and had amazing results! I contacted a different lawyer at the beginning of my case and had no communication, effort and I even started to question whether I was forgotten about. I made the change and got with Mr. Gallian and he was quick and effective with making progress with my case! He was always professional, very communicative, knowledgeable in what he does and will get you good results! I highly recommend him and I know I'll be contacting his firm if I ever need to again.
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Gregg was an amazing lawyer. He and his team were incredibly professional from the start and Gregg was just as passionate about my issue as I was. He cared - which is something many lawyers don't do. He expedited resolution to my issue and sought to restore justice. I am eternally grateful for him and his colleagues. I had been fighting this issue for 6 months and within 2 weeks of hiring him, it was resolved. Highly recommend if you are in need of a lawyer.
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Thank you! Truly, the Gallian Firm, is the representation you want and need when hopeless situations arise! We worked directly with Gregg and he was a wonderful listener, discussed options, and stood by throughout the process…And well beyond! He was always available to help ease worries and answer questions. He has great patience and doesn’t give up! We are so grateful to have found Gregg and would recommend him to anyone! Thank you again!
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Greg Gallian came highly recommended by a nationally renowned attorney. In our stressful situation, he put our mind at ease and handled our situation with the utmost attention and diligence. Thank you, Greg for your expertise and professionalism. We are forever grateful for having you on our team!
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Thorough, respectful and communicative! We went with Mr. Gallian after having a lack luster lawyer. We immediately saw the difference in approach, he truly goes above and beyond, as well as the employees in the office. He got us the best possible outcome, something that wasn't even given as an option with our previous lawyer! I'd recommend his services to anyone. I can't thank him enough for his work.
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Mr. Gallian was upfront and professional in every interaction. He communicated his game plan effectively and set realistic expectations for us heading into court. We were very pleased with the outcome!

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