When an individual steals or damages the property of another party in Texas, the alleged offense can result in serious criminal charges. Convictions not only carry possible incarceration and fines, but may also lead to a multitude of long-term consequences.
It is important to understand that prosecutors handling these types of cases usually need to prove that an alleged offender specifically intended to damage the property in question. When an alleged property crime is the result of an accident or misunderstanding, it can be much more difficult to prove a person’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Property Crimes Defense Lawyer in Denton, Frisco, Lewisville, Flower Mound, TX
Do you think that you might be under investigation or were you already arrested in Denton County for an alleged property crime? Make sure that you have legal representation before you make any kind of statement to authorities. Contact Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today.
Richard McConathy is an experienced criminal defense attorney in Denton who represent clients all over Denton County, including Argyle, Flower Mound, Highland Village, Lewisville, Little Elm, The Colony, and many other nearby communities. We can provide a complete evaluation of your case when you call (940) 222-8004 to schedule a free initial consultation.
Common Property Offenses in Texas
Property is defined under Texas Penal Code § 28.01(3) as meaning real property; tangible or intangible personal property, including anything severed from the land; or a document, including money, that represents or embodies anything of value. State law in Texas establishes many different crimes relating to the theft or damage of another party’s property.
The grades of alleged property offenses are often determined by the amount of damage the alleged offender caused. Some of the types of property crimes that alleged offenders are most frequently charged within Denton County include, but are not limited to:
- Criminal Mischief
- Criminal Trespass
- Burglary of a Vehicle
Property Crime Defenses in Denton County
Many property offenses require prosecutors to prove that alleged offenders had culpable mental states. Culpable mental states are classified according to relative degrees under Texas Penal Code § 6.02(d), from highest to lowest, as follows: intentional, knowing, reckless, or criminal negligence.
Texas Penal Code § 6.02(b) establishes that if the definition of an offense does not prescribe a culpable mental state, a culpable mental state is nevertheless required unless the definition plainly dispenses with any mental element. Except as provided in Texas Penal Code § 6.02(b), a person does not commit an offense unless he or she intentionally, knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence engages in conduct as the definition of the offense requires.
Every case is different, and alleged offenders may have unique defenses available to them that are not available to other types of people accused of property crimes. Some of the most common defenses against criminal charges for alleged property offenses include, but are not limited to:
- Mistake / Reasonable Belief — Applicable if alleged offenders reasonably believed the property was theirs or they had permission to use the property;
- Duress / Coercion — Applicable when alleged offenders were threatened by another party if they did not commit the alleged offenses;
- Justification — Applicable when alleged offenders committed otherwise criminal acts in order to prevent a greater public or private harm; or
- Renunciation — Applicable when alleged offenders withdrew from participating in criminal acts before they were committed and made efforts to prevent the acts from occurring.
Texas Property Offense Resources
Denton TX crime rates and statistics | NeighborhoodScout — Visit this website to see how property crime rates in Denton County compare to the nation and the rest of Texas. You can click on areas in an interactive map to get detailed information about specific neighborhoods. You can also read an analysis of Denton County’s crime rates.
Texas Penal Code | Chapter 28 — View the full text of this chapter of the Penal Code relating to offenses against property. Learn more about arson, criminal mischief, and graffiti. You can also find information about how the amount of pecuniary loss is determined.
Find A Denton County Defense Attorney for Property Crimes Charges | Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy
If you were arrested or believe that you could be under investigation for any kind of alleged property crime in Denton County, it is in your best interest to retain legal counsel as soon as possible. Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy can fight to get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed.
Denton criminal defense lawyer Richard McConathy will aggressively defend individuals in The Colony, Little Elm, Lewisville, Highland Village, Flower Mound, Argyle, and many surrounding areas of Denton County. Call (940) 222-8004 or fill out an online contact form to have our attorneys review your case and explore all of your legal options during a free, confidential consultation.