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A Bill That Gives Convicted Criminals A Second Chance

Earlier this year, Texas lawmakers approved House Bill 3016, popularly known as the "second chances" bill. It recently went into effect, and already numerous individuals are seeking to take advantage of its benefits.

As reported in the Texas Tribune, the bill makes it easier for certain individuals with criminal records to apply for jobs. Specifically, people who have been convicted of low-level, nonviolent crimes are now eligible to petition to have their criminal records sealed. What this means is that prospective employers, when running background checks, will not have access to the applicant's criminal history.

Can I be charged for drug possession if I didn't have any on me?

Drug charges are treated seriously in Texas, with harsh penalties for even seemingly minor infractions. It is important for defendants to fully understand these charges in order to best combat the potential legal consequences of a conviction. Drug possession allegations often cause significant confusion for defendants who were charged even though police did not find any illegal substance on their person at the time of arrest.

Many people are familiar with the popular TV or movie scene of an officer patting down a person, finding an illegal drug somewhere on the suspect's body and then making an arrest. While this can be the springboard for a possession charge, authorities must only demonstrate constructive possession. Constructive possession means that a person must have access to illegal drugs that are not necessarily on them, such as inside of their home or in a vehicle for which they have the keys.

How reliable might witnesses in a DWI case be?

Prosecuting attorneys can use many "tools" when they put on or negotiate a DWI case. For example, to show your BAC was above 0.08, they can use the results of tests and show a video demonstrating a defendant's slurred speech. Witnesses can testify as to a driver swerving and drinking constantly at a party before getting behind the wheel.

Defense lawyers have many techniques at their disposal too. There are many potential problems with BAC tests, for example, and the same goes for witness testimony. Here is an overview of two common reliability issues that witnesses in a DWI case might have.

DUI/DWI: Woman faces drunk driving charges

An El Paso woman is facing serious charges following an arrest in the early morning of Oct. 19. The 22-year-old is facing DUI/DWI charges after she was pulled over by Texas police with a child in her vehicle. So far, no court date has been announced in connection with this case. 

Details about the arrest are scarce as of this report, but it has been confirmed the woman was pulled over after allegedly being witnessed swerving in and out of her traffic lane. Police on the scene discovered a 4-month-old child in the vehicle, though the driver's relation to the child is unclear. Police say the officers determined the woman was intoxicated, though the arrest report did not mention whether roadside sobriety, breath or blood tests were administered. 

Telltale signs of traumatic brain injuries

After being involved in some sort of accident in which you took a blow to the head, the injury could be worse than you think. When it comes to traumatic brain injuries, symptoms can vary widely and may not even appear until days after the incident. So, what should you look for after a head injury and when should you rush to the nearest Texas hospital?

Some of the symptoms you may recognize in yourself include a persistent headache, nausea or vomiting that does not go away no matter what you do. You could notice that you are slurring your words. You may also find that you are experiencing a loss in coordination, numbness or weakness. These signs indicate that your injury could be more severe than you first believed. You more than likely need immediate medical attention. 

How might a DWI affect my reputation and career?

When you are arrested on DWI charges, many things are likely running through your mind. You worry about being able to keep your driver's license and perhaps even your job. Longer term, you could be concerned your career will suffer.

The truth is you are right to worry a DWI conviction could negatively affect your reputation and career. That is why stopping a charge from ever becoming a conviction is important.

2 men arrested on charges of drug possession in Texas

A father and son duo have been arrested after police officers said they found cash and drugs in their home, according to reports. Texas police in Montgomery County have charged a 61-year-old man and his 40-year-old son with drug possession. The report said the men were taken to a county jail, where it is believed they are still being held in advance of court proceedings. 

The police report indicates the men were arrested on Oct. 4 after police executed a search warrant for their residence. The search warrant came on the heels of several community complaints of drugs allegedly being sold out of the home. Police said they found what they believe to be a pound of marijuana, as well as codeine, Xanax and Viagra pills and some $5,400 in cash. 

18-year-old charged with drug possession, delivery

A man police believe to be the "main supplier" of methamphetamine to Medina County students has been arrested. The Texas man was allegedly found with drugs on his person, leading officers to arrest him. He stands charged with drug possession as well as manufacturing and delivering a controlled substance. No court date has been announced. 

According to the press release from the Medina County sheriff's office, police said they had learned of a major drug supplier operating in several neighborhood schools, though they did not specify in which district this was taking place. Police conducted an investigation of indeterminate scope, but came to the conclusion the 18-year-old suspect was that supplier. The press release also noted that the student code of conduct and local policies would be observed in case any students were to be found involved, as police said they expected to make more arrests. 

Truckers are guilty of distracted driving, too

The stereotype for distracted driving tends to be someone texting or trying to put on makeup behind the wheel. Yet these behaviors are only two of many ways in which drivers succumb to distractions, and guilty parties are not just young, inexperienced drivers. People of all ages and backgrounds can become distracted while operating a motor vehicle.

This is true even for those with professional driving jobs, such as truckers. Although they go through training and must follow industry regulations, long hours on the road make distractions even likelier and more tempting.

Texas woman charged with drug possession

A police bust has resulted in an arrest in Harris County where a 39-year-old woman is facing serious charges. Texas police arrested the woman following a search of her home that allegedly revealed the presence of drugs and paraphernalia. The woman now faces drug possession charges and possible jail time if she is found guilty. 

According to the police report, investigators searched the woman's house on Sept. 21, though it was not clarified whether they had received a warrant for this search. When they entered her residence in Bacliff, they say they found nearly 8 ounces of what they believe to be cocaine. They also found 35 grams of what appeared to be crack, several handguns and an assault rifle believed to be stolen, an allegedly stolen vehicle and just over $8,000 in cash. 

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