Evading arrest is a serious charge and one that deserves experienced and qualified legal representation, especially since it can be committed accidentally.
Evading arrest in Texas refers to any act committed in an effort to avoid getting arrested, attempt to get out of an arrest, or ignoring officers' attempts to arrest. According to Texas Penal Code § 38.034, evading arrest is committed any time a person “intentionally flees from a person he [or she] knows is a peace officer attempting to lawfully arrest or detain [them]".
However, in Texas, you may also be charged with evading arrest if you fail to notice that a police officer is trying to pull you over in traffic for long enough. You may be charged regardless of the reasons you failed to notice.
If you've been charged with evading arrest in Houston, Texas, you need to contact qualified criminal defense lawyers as soon as possible. At Leeds Law Firm, we can help defend you and may be able to reduce the severity of the charges against you, depending on the circumstances.How Serious Are Evading Arrest Charges in Texas?
Evading arrest charges are serious enough on their own and may be connected to other charges such as theft, reckless driving, or a range of other criminal or civil offenses. Depending on the circumstances, you may be charged with either misdemeanor evading arrest, or felony evading arrest.
For instance, if you are charged with Class A Misdemeanor Evading Arrest in Texas, you may be penalized with up to 1 year in county jail and/or a fine not exceeding $10,000. However, a 3rd-degree felony charge of evading arrest may come with a penalty of up to 10 years in jail and/or a fine not exceeding $10,000.
Clearly, charges of evading arrest are incredibly serious in Texas.
It's also important to know that your charges may be upgraded if you have a history of evading arrest and that even a single prior conviction may increase the severity of the charges against you in Texas court. Additionally, Evading Arrest in a Motor Vehicle is a more serious charge than Evading Arrest on foot.
That is part of why it is so important to contact a qualified criminal defense attorney in Houston as soon as you have been charged with evading arrest.Related Offenses
In addition to evading arrest charges, your charge may be upgraded with resisting arrest and hindering apprehension or prosecution.
Resisting arrest is when you physically attempt to stop an arrest, usually your own. Any person who uses force in an attempt to escape arrest or avoid prosecution, may be charged with resisting arrest.
Additionally, anyone who fails to provide information about a crime in an attempt to protect the suspect from an arrest, may be charged with hindering apprehension or prosecution. The same also applies to aiding or hiding someone who is actively evading arrest.Does The State Need To Prove Evading Arrest Charges?
Yes, Texas is required to meet two standards to prove that an evading arrest charge is lawful.
- You intended to evade arrest.
- The arrest itself was lawful.
The state must prove that there was a legal justification to arrest you in the first place. If the arrest was not lawful, you cannot be charged with evading arrest.Start Building Your Case Today
It might seem difficult to defend against an evading arrest charge, but the sooner you contact a criminal defense lawyer in Houston, the better chance you have. Our experienced team of attorneys at Leeds Law Firm can help defend you against evading arrest charges. Let us help, contact us about your evading arrest charge today.