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Understanding Criminal Procedure and Arrests in Texas


When Can an Officer Make an Arrest in Midland

Criminal cases often begin with the arrest of a suspected individual. Specific circumstances must exist before a police officer can lawfully arrest someone. 

Generally speaking, a peace officer (police, sheriff's deputy, constable, etc.) can arrest someone if the officer has a warrant of arrest for that person. Art. 15.01, Texas Code of Criminal Procedure defines "warrant of arrest" as a written order from a  magistrate, commanding a peace officer to seize the body of the person named in the warrant, who is accused of an offense. A warrant of arrest must be based on the written affidavit of a peace officer, swearing that he has reason to believe that the named person has committed a crime. The magistrate signing the warrant must find that the officer's affidavit shows probable cause to believe that the named person has committed a crime. Under Art. 14.01, Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, a peace officer may also arrest a person, without a warrant, for any offense committed in the officer's presence, or within his view.

Arresting someone is a serious matter, because it deprives the arrested person of his liberty. For this reason, police are required to follow certain procedures when effecting an arrest. It is often assumed that police must put a person in handcuffs or into a police vehicle to arrest them, however, this is not the case. Police may choose to do so depending on the circumstances but they are not legally required to handcuff or physically detain someone to effect an arrest. Midland police officers will often handcuff an individual, and tell him that he is "detained", but not "arrested." Whether or not a person is detained or arrested is a matter for the Court, not the officer, to determine.

Police are also not legally required to read an accused his  Miranda rights (“you have the right to remain silent, anything you do say…”) at the time of the person's arrest, BUT the warning must be read before the officer can interrogate the arrested person. arrest. If the officer questions an arrested person, without first giving the Miranda warning, the statement of the arrested person can't be used against him.  

Why You Need a Criminal Defense Lawyer if Arrested in Texas

If you are arrested by police, you must identify yourself, and present your driver's license and proof of insurance, but you should politely refuse to submit to further questioning, and immediately ask to speak to a lawyer. All you have to say is "I invoke my right to counsel, and decline to answer any question or make any statement unless a lawyer is present." This is your right. Often times police will tell an arrested suspect that if the suspect submits to questioning, the police will tell the District Attorney that the suspect was cooperative. People who are under arrest often think that such cooperation will help them, but this is rarely the case. 

An attorney can also later review your arrest for any issues of excessive force or unlawful arrest, and assist you with preparing any related motions. Call H.W. Leverett, Jr. today at 4326833323 to schedule a Free Consultation.

Law Office of H.W. Leverett, Jr. Is Here for You

The Law Office of H.W. Leverett, Jr., is located in Midland, Texas, and represents clients throughout West Texas and the Permian Basin, including Odessa, Andrews, Monahans, Big Spring, Pecos, Fort Stockton, Crane, Kermit, Seminole, Midland County, Andrews County, Dawson County, Ector County, Gaines County, Glasscock County, Howard County, Martin County, Mitchell County, Upton County and Ward County, Texas.

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Law Office of H.W. Leverett, Jr. is committed to answering your questions about Criminal Defense and DUI law issues in Midland, Texas.

I offer a free consultation and I'll gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact me today to schedule an appointment.