Llano Criminal Defense Attorney
The road ahead can be scary and overwhelming if you or a loved one is facing criminal charges in Llano, Texas. Llano County law enforcement agencies, helped by the prosecution, frequently prepare themselves with resources to get a conviction. If you walk into the Llano County courthouse without an experienced Llano criminal defense lawyer by your side, you may feel the scales of justice have been tipped against you. Remember that you are innocent until proven guilty in the eyes of the law. But that doesn’t mean you should go on this journey alone.
In small towns like Llano, Texas, having someone who understands the community and its legal challenges can give you an advantage. Although public defenders work hard, they are frequently spread thin across multiple cases, limiting the time and attention they can give to each person. That’s where W. Shane Jennings, a well-known Llano criminal defense attorney, comes in.
Shane Jennings doesn’t just bring legal expertise to the table; he brings an understanding of the Llano community. With Shane, you aren’t just another case number; you’re a fellow community member who deserves a thorough, individualized defense strategy. Trust in an ally who will look deeply into the details of your case, investigate each element of the charges against you, and fiercely defend your rights.
If the stakes are high and you’re looking for someone who understands the climate of Llano, Texas, Shane Jennings is the man to call. Contact us today for a no-obligation consultation to ensure you have one of the best Llano criminal defense attorneys on your side.
Benefits of Working with Llano Criminal Defense Lawyer W. Shane Jennings
In criminal law, representing yourself can be like trying to steer a ship through rough seas without a compass. “Innocent until proven guilty” is still a part of Texas law, but the criminal justice system is complicated and can be unsettling for people who don’t know much about it. If you make a single mistake during the process, it could hurt your case.
You can’t overstate the value of having a skilled criminal defense lawyer in Llano, such as W. Shane Jennings, on your team. Here are some of the benefits of having him represent you for your case:
- Protection of Rights – W. Shane Jennings protects your rights and interests from the moment you get arrested until the end of the trial.
- Plea Negotiations – A favorable plea deal or lower charges may drastically change the outcome of your case. An experienced criminal defense attorney in Llano understands how to negotiate with prosecutors effectively.
- Defense Against Wrongful Convictions – No one should suffer the consequences of a crime they didn’t commit. Shane Jennings has the skills to spot weaknesses in the prosecution’s case to protect you from unfair convictions.
- Gathering and Presenting Evidence – A strong defense requires compelling evidence. We work hard to collect important proof that can plant doubt in the jurors’ minds.
- Witness Location – A single testimony can sometimes turn the tide of a case. Our team of criminal defense attorneys in Llano, Texas, has the resources and expertise to find crucial witnesses who can support your claim.
- Jury Selection – If your case goes to trial, picking the right jurors can be essential. We understand the complicated process of selecting jurors who will be more favorable to your lawsuit.
- Solid Arguments – Every charge you face deserves a well-planned defense. To counter those charges, our team develops and presents powerful arguments.
Criminal charges can have far-reaching consequences. A conviction can hurt your future, from restricting job opportunities and housing options to limiting your ability to get a college degree. Leaving your fate to chance is not an option in such circumstances. With the help of an experienced Llano criminal defense attorney, you improve your chances of getting a dismissal or a reduced sentence. We will offer the best defense for your future.
What Types of Cases Does Your Law Firm Handle?
We understand that facing criminal charges can be an overwhelming and stressful experience at the Law Offices of W. Shane Jennings. As dedicated Llano criminal defense attorneys, we offer solid legal representation tailored to your situation. Our expertise includes but is not limited to the following types of criminal cases:
- Aggravated Assault – This charge refers to an attack with the goal of seriously injuring or killing another person. It is different from a typical assault because of factors like the use of a lethal weapon or the severity of the injury caused.
- Aggravated Burglary – This type of burglary involves breaking into a home intending to commit another crime, usually while armed or causing harm to a resident.
- Assault and Battery – While many people use assault and battery together, assault focuses on the threat of harm, while battery requires actual physical contact. For example, threatening to hit someone is an assault, but carrying out the threat is battery.
- Attempted Murder – As the name suggests, this charge involves taking deliberate action to kill another person but failing to do so.
- Domestic Violence – This is defined by violent or aggressive behavior in the home, usually involving a partner or spouse. Additionally, abuse can be physical, emotional, or even psychological.
- Drug Crimes – These can range from possessing a small amount of an illegal substance to more severe charges like trafficking or distribution. The severity usually depends on the type and quantity of the drug involved.
- DWI/DUI – Driving while intoxicated/driving under the influence means people who operate cars while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Specific definitions and consequences can vary but often involve criminal and civil penalties.
- Federal Criminal Defense – Federal crimes violate federal laws in the United States. They are prosecuted in federal courts and can range from white-collar to terrorism-related offenses.
- Fraud and Embezzlement – Both involve the use of deception for personal gain. While fraud generally means tricking another for monetary gain, embezzlement is the misuse of funds entrusted to one’s care.
- Larceny and Theft Crimes – Larceny is the illegal taking of another person’s property to deprive them of it permanently. Theft, as a broader term, can also encompass crimes like burglary or robbery.
- Murder – This charge refers to the intentional killing of another person. Depending on the circumstances, such as premeditation, the court may charge it as first-degree or second-degree murder.
- Sexual Assault – Defined under the Texas Penal Code §22.011, sexual assault involves intentional and unwanted sexual contact without the other party’s consent. This can include anything from inappropriate touching to more serious offenses.
Understanding the specifics of these charges is critical for setting up a strong defense, and our team of experienced criminal defense attorneys in Llano is here to keep you informed every step of the way.
Felony Crimes vs. Misdemeanor Crimes
In criminal law, crimes are generally classified into two categories based on severity — felonies and misdemeanors. Both can significantly impact your life, but they differ considerably in terms of penalties, societal stigma, and long-term consequences.
What Are Felonies?
Felonies are the most severe type of crime and frequently involve bodily harm or the threat of bodily harm to others. As a result, those convicted of a felony face harsh penalties under the legal system.
- Violence-Based Felonies – These typically involve physical harm or the threat to hurt someone, and they include:
- Murder – The intentional and unlawful killing of another person
- Aggravated Assault – This attack is intended to seriously harm or scare the victim
- Kidnapping – Illegally capturing or detaining another person against their will
- Property-Based Felonies – These don’t necessarily involve direct harm to a person but instead surround a property, and the following are in this category:
- Burglary – Illegally entering a property with the intent to commit theft or another crime
- Grand Theft – Stealing property or money above a specific value determined by the jurisdiction
- Arson – Intentionally setting property on fire
- Drug-Related Felonies – Drug crimes can fall into this category depending on the quantity and type of drug. Examples are:
- Drug Trafficking – Manufacturing, distributing, or possessing with the intent to distribute large quantities of illegal substances
- Manufacturing Drugs – Creating illegal drugs, like methamphetamine or certain kinds of synthetic drugs
- White-Collar Felonies – Non-violent crimes typically motivated by financial gain that can include:
- Fraud – Deception intended to result in financial or personal gain
- Embezzlement – Misappropriation or misusing funds entrusted to one’s care but belonging to another person or entity
- Insider Trading – Using confidential information to trade stocks or securities for personal gain
What Are Misdemeanors?
Misdemeanors are criminal offenses that are less severe than felonies. They typically involve less harm or potential damage to others and are punished less severely.
- General Misdemeanors – Common offenses that might not severely harm others but disrupt public order, including:
- Petty Theft – Stealing property or money below a specific value
- Simple Assault – Threatening or causing minor harm without the intent to seriously injure
- Public Intoxication – Being visibly drunk or under the influence of drugs in public spaces
- Regulatory Misdemeanors – Offenses related to the violation of local statutes and regulations, such as:
- Traffic Violations – Speeding, driving without a license, or running a red light
- Building Code Violations – Failing to maintain property according to local regulations
- Noise Violations – Exceeding allowable noise levels, often during restricted hours
- Gross or High Misdemeanors – These are on the higher end of misdemeanors and can sometimes carry penalties close to those of lower-end felonies. Examples include:
- Repeat DUI Offenses – Being caught driving under the influence multiple times
- Stalking – Repeatedly following or harassing another person, causing them fear
How They Affect You
Both felonies and misdemeanors have consequences, but felonies tend to have much more lasting consequences than a misdemeanor charge, and they include the following:
- Felonies – Convictions result in steeper fines and longer prison sentences, often exceeding a year, and served in state or federal prisons.
- Misdemeanors – Penalties are generally lighter, often resulting in fines, community service, probation, or short jail sentences, usually less than a year in a local or Llano county jail.
- Felonies – A felony conviction can heavily stigmatize an individual, making societal reintegration challenging. It can limit voting rights, firearm ownership, and more.
- Misdemeanors – While carrying a stigma, it is generally less pronounced than felonies. The societal consequences might be lesser, but they still can influence an individual’s reputation.
- Felonies – These can impact employment opportunities, housing applications, and educational pursuits. They remain on one’s criminal record, often requiring expungement or a pardon to remove.
- Misdemeanors – While they can also impact future opportunities, their effects tend to be less lasting. Some misdemeanors can even be automatically expunged from one’s record after certain conditions are met.
In summary, while both felonies and misdemeanors can significantly impact one’s life, felonies are undeniably more severe with more profound long-term implications. Regardless of the crime’s nature, a comprehensive understanding of the associated charges and potential consequences is essential.
Is it Possible to Remove a Misdemeanor From My Criminal Record?
Yes, you can get a misdemeanor expunged from your criminal record in Texas under certain conditions. This process, called expunction or expungement, lets those eligible have specific offenses removed from their record as if they never happened. Also, a recent development, Texas HB 3016, or the “Second Chance Bill,” offers more options for those looking to clear their records.
What Are ‘Enhanceable’ Offenses?
The term “enhanceable” offenses refers to specific crimes in Texas where previous convictions may lead to subsequent charges, resulting in harsher penalties. The idea behind such enhancements is to discourage repeat offenses and punish habitual offenders harshly.
DWI as an Enhanceable Offense
Texas has stringent rules regarding DWI. Unlike some states that “forgive” or “ignore” past DWI/DUI offenses after a certain period, Texas keeps these records indefinitely for enhancement.
- First DWI Offense – This is usually charged as a Class B misdemeanor.
- Second DWI Offense – With a previous conviction on record, the court moves your second DWI to a Class A misdemeanor.
- Third DWI Offense – If someone gets two prior convictions, the third DWI offense escalates to a felony charge, carrying heftier penalties, including potential prison time.
Enhancement in Domestic Violence Cases
Similarly, offenses like family violence and domestic violence in Texas are enhanceable. A second offense can lead to more severe charges and penalties.
Given the seriousness of these enhanceable offenses, taking any criminal charge seriously is critical, as even a single conviction can set the stage for harsher penalties in the future. It is also essential to have reliable legal counsel. An experienced Llano criminal defense attorney will be familiar with the specifics of Texas law and create the best defense strategy based on the facts of the case.
Experienced Criminal Lawyer in Llano, Texas
W. Shane Jennings symbolizes expertise and dedication in the Llano, Texas, legal environment. He has a long history of hard work and has spent years mastering the complexities of the criminal law field. Jennings, a lawyer and a veteran of hundreds of trials, has an unmatched level of courtroom experience.
His approach to legal representation combines aggressive advocacy with unwavering dedication, ensuring every client benefits from his extensive knowledge and fierce commitment to justice. W. Shane Jennings is the epitome of experience, tenacity, and trusted legal prowess concerning a criminal attorney in Llano. You can reach out for a free consultation today.
In addition to Llano, W. Shane Jennings also serves Las Cruces and Hobbs, New Mexico.