Spring TX Criminal Law FAQs

What is the Difference between Parole and Probation?


While similar, parole and probation are two different types of supervision. Parole is a form of supervision over an individual after serving a portion of a sentence and then being released from jail or prison. Once a Texas prisoner is eligible for parole, the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles makes the decision as to whether or not the individual deserves to be released early and under which conditions. Parole is not a right. It is a privilege that must be earned. There are no guarantees that parole will be granted to eligible inmates.

Probation is a sentence by a judge that is either an alternative to imprisonment or an extension of it. For example, rather than sentencing an individual to prison, a judge may sentence the person to probation or a term such as “one year in prison and three years of probation.” Probation is part of the sentence determined by the judge, not the Board of Pardons and Paroles.

What is a Felony?

Crimes are typically classified as felonies or misdemeanors. The Texas Penal Code divides crimes into these two categories. Felonies are the more serious crimes such as murder and rape. As such, these crimes lead to longer sentences with the individual being sent to the state institutional division – or even being sentenced to death. If you are facing a felony conviction in Spring TX, criminal lawyer, Joe Cannon – can help defend your case.

What is a Misdemeanor?

In Texas, the Penal Code recognizes two types of crimes: felonies and misdemeanors. Misdemeanors are less serious crimes, such as trespassing, which could lead to fines or jail time, usually less than one year. Misdemeanors are classified by degree of seriousness and punishment types. Some misdemeanor crimes are considered felony crimes under state law if they are committed a second time by the same person. While less serious, a good criminal lawyer is a must for misdemeanor crimes.

How can a Spring Texas Criminal Lawyer Help?

If you are facing a criminal issue in Harris County, you do not need to face it on your own. In fact, you have a right to an attorney! Criminal lawyers are not here to judge you or make sure that you get away with a crime; they are here to ensure that your rights are protected and that you have the opportunity to present your side of the story. Criminal lawyers build a defense based on the facts of the case and provide you with legal advice. Whether you’ve been accused of a major crime, want to make a bargain, are up for parole, or need help understanding the Texas legal requirements governing the terms of your probation, a criminal lawyer can help. As a Texas criminal lawyer, Joe Cannon understands the Texas legal system and criminal law.

If I have been arrested and want to remain silent, what do I say?

The Miranda Rights include the “right to remain silent.” While you could simply say nothing or “I choose to remain silent,” a better choice is, “I want to speak with an attorney.” You have a right to an attorney, so make sure to exercise that right sooner, rather than later. Having a criminal lawyer by your side during interrogations ensures that you will not say something that can later be used against you.

Why Can’t I Represent Myself?

Do you cut your own hair? Tattoo your own arms? Fill your own cavities? Texas criminal law is complex and the stakes are high. If ever there is a time when you need experience, now is that time. Unless you are an experienced criminal lawyer, self-representation is not advised and even then it may not be in your best interest. Joe Cannon is an objective, experienced, and dedicated criminal lawyer who will look out for your rights and ensure that you receive a fair trial.

What is the Difference between an Arraignment and a Preliminary Hearing?

An arraignment is a procedure where you appear before the judge who will tell you what you have been charged with. At this time, bail may be set or you may be released on your own recognizance. If you are eligible for a public defender, the assignment will be made at this time.

Preliminary hearings are where the district attorney presents information to the judge to establish that there are reasonable grounds for the case to move forward and bring your case to trial.