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Mark W. Bennett

Mark Bennett’s Answers

53 total

  • Criminal defense

    My son was moving from an apt complex that is gated. He was pulling his truck through the gate and it closed on him causing the gate to fall over. He was scared and left. The complex said they were going to file destruction of property charges ...

    Mark’s Answer

    Criminal mischief can be a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the amount of the damage (more than $1500 worth is a felony; less is a misdemeanor).

    Of course your son can dispute the charge. Criminal mischief requires intentional or knowing (not accidental) damage.

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  • Disclose deferred adjudication for minor in possession of alcohol on grad school application?

    10 years ago (at age 19) I pled no contest to a citation for being a minor in possession of alcohol in Texas. I did community service and an alcohol awareness class and received deferred adjudication. This is my only run-in with the law--I've ne...

    Mark’s Answer

    Right, unless you've had the MIP expunged. If you haven't already, now would probably be a good time to do so. Call lawyer Jamie Spencer in Austin.

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  • Rape charges

    My friend just got notified this morning of rage charges against him from an incident two weeks ago. Both parties were drunk and kissing just went a little too far. So I think that she is regretting it and trying to get back at him. What should he...

    Mark’s Answer

    Good advice. Your client also needs to stop talking to anyone about this incident, except in private conversations with potential lawyers.

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  • Indictment anf information

    if i file a motion to quash inductment due to a default charging instrument on the day of trial can i object to the state amending the charging inststrument

    Mark’s Answer

    A motion to quash indictment must be filed before the day of trial.

    The State can't amend the charging instrument on the day of trial over the defendant's objection.

    Not all changes to the charging instrument, however, are amendments.

    If you don't have a lawyer you trust, get one now.

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  • Third probation revoktion

    for your third time you revoke your probation can the judge give you 3 years just for a little family fight over the phone that lasted 15 seconds,and the charges were dropped the next day?

    Mark’s Answer

    Not nearly enough information.

    When you're on probation, any violation of the probation might permit the judge to revoke your probation. If the "little family fight" was a probation violation, the judge can sentence your son to the maximum if she wants to.

    The maximum punishment on probation revocation depends on the crime for which you are on probation and the terms of the probation.

    If someone is on probation for a first-degree felony, then the range of punishment on revocation might be up to life in prison. If it's a second-degree felony, the max might be 20 years. Third-degree, 10 years. And so forth.

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  • Defense for allegations of Agg Sexual Assault-Child

    I am currently on Full house arrest for agg sexual allegations by my 11 yr old niece( brother's daughter). Alleged Incident supposeably occurred 3 Feb, I had a warrant issued for my arrest about 7 Apr and was arrested on 11 Apr. I was incarcerat...

    Mark’s Answer

    You need the best criminal defense lawyer you can get; there are lots of great lawyers in San Antonio.

    You're better off with a court-appointed lawyer than with a low-bid lawyer. If you hire the low bidder, you're virtually guaranteed to get bad representation; with a court-appointed lawyer you have a chance of good representation.

    If you trust your court appointed lawyer, great. If not, find a way to trust him. If you can't trust him, talk to your friends, family, boss; beg, borrow, or steal the money to hire a great lawyer. (No, don't steal.)

    A great lawyer can advise you on all of your questions, try to get the judge to change the conditions of your bond, and, if you get working on it now, might get an opportunity to make a presentation to the grand jury (can you pass a polygraph?) to try to prevent your indictment.

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    right to own a rifle after being conficted of a non violent crime

    Mark’s Answer

    Depends on the crime.

    You lose (under federal and state law) to possess a firearm when you're convicted of a felony, whether violent or nonviolent.

    Are there misdemeanor nonviolent crimes that can result in the same loss? Not that I can think of. Class C assault against a family member, arguably.

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  • Texas criminal code, consequences for possessing stolen property


    Mark’s Answer

    In Texas, exercising control over property with intent to deprive the owner of property and with knowledge that the property was stolen by another is theft.

    If you know that the goods are stolen, you have to get rid of them. But you shouldn't just throw them away, because that wouldn't end the theft. Rather, you should find a way to get the property back to the owner.

    Much as it pains me, a criminal defense lawyer, to say it, our best bet may be to report the incident to the police. The difficulty, though, is that this might somehow incriminate you. So Erick's advice to talk to a lawyer first is worth following. A lawyer might be able to review the facts with you, help you decide what chance there is that making a police report will cause more trouble for you than some other means of getting the property back to its owner, and advise you accordingly.

    Mark Bennett

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  • Texas criminal code, is there a statute of limitations for heroin possession

    what is the status of limitation for heroin?

    Mark’s Answer

    Heroin is a controlled substance in penalty group I. Possession of a penalty group I controlled substance is a felony. The statute of limitations for a Texas state prosecution for a controlled substance felony is three years. Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Art. 12.01.

    The federal statute of limitations is five years.

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  • Texas criminal code, what happens if a grand jury "no bills" a case

    My son was stabbed & nearly died. Kid who did it had been harrassing my son for months. DA and detective felt our case was "slam dunk" indictment. Defendant's family are very, very well off. Hired detective/attorney and got some witnesses to s...

    Mark’s Answer

    Let me add that the civil statute of limitations is two years from the date of injury. That is, a civil lawsuit must be filed within two years of the stabbing or not at all.

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