Benchbook
Criminal Procedure


 Search headings for one or more words. 

Instructions:
Set the global heading depth using the buttons below.
Click the plus (+) symbols in the left column to show subheadings for that section ONLY. Click RESET to start over.

Heading Depth


Caution: Displaying a high level of headings may result in large pages with slower load times.

RESET

Laws | Criminal Procedure

+

PART ONE: CRIMINAL PROCEDURE

(Text)

-

+

I. SUBJECT MATTER JURISDICTION

(Text)

-

+

A. Subject Matter Jurisdiction

(Text)

-

+

B. Original Jurisdiction

(Text)

-

+

C. Appellate Jurisdiction

(Text)

-

+

II. VENUE

(Text)

-

+

A. Subject Matter Jurisdiction

(Text)

-

+

B. Chapter 13, Texas Code of Criminal Procedure

(Text)

-

+

C. Specific Crimes

(Text)

-

+

D. General Rule

(Text)

-

+

E. Rules for Uncommon Situations

(Text)

-

+

1. County of Offense Cannot Be Identified

(Text)

-

+

2. Offense Committed on Boundaries

(Text)

-

+

3. Offense Committed on a Boundary Stream

(Text)

-

+

4. Offense Committed outside this State

(Text)

-

+

5. Offense Committed on a Vessel

(Text)

-

+

F. Proof of Venue and Defendant's Objection to Venue

(Text)

-

+

1. Allegation of Venue

(Text)

-

+

2. Proof of Venue

(Text)

-

+

3. Objection to Venue

(Text)

-

+

G. Change of Venue

(Text)

-

+

1. Defendant's Right to a Fair Trial

(Text)

-

+

2. Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Chapter 31

(Text)

-

+

3. Change of Venue Granted on Defendant's Motion

(Text)

-

+

4. Change of Venue Granted on State's Motion

(Text)

-

+

5. Change of Venue Granted on Motion of the Court

(Text)

-

+

III. SEARCH AND SEIZURE

(Text)

-

+

A. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

B. The Constitutional and Statutory Guarantee

(Text)

-

+

1. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

2. Search and Seizure Provisions

(Text)

-

+

3. Constitutional Requirements and Definitions

(Text)

-

+

C. General Rule

(Text)

-

+

D. Search and Seizure Analysis

(Text)

-

+

1. Method of Analysis

(Text)

-

+

2. Search and Seizure Principles in Detail

(Text)

-

+

3. Timing - Motion to Suppress

(Text)

-

+

E. Magistrate Function: Issuing a Search Warrant

(Text)

-

+

1. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

2. Search Warrant - Definition and Requirements

(Text)

-

+

3. Warrant Application Process - Purpose

(Text)

-

+

4. Components of a Valid Search Warrant

(Text)

-

+

5. Sealing Affidavits

(Text)

-

+

6. Execution of a Search Warrant

(Text)

-

+

IV. ARREST

(Text)

-

+

A. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

B. The Constitutional and Statutory Guarantee

(Text)

-

+

1. The Provisions

(Text)

-

+

2. Constitutional Requirements

(Text)

-

+

C. General Rule

(Text)

-

+

D. Arrest Analysis

(Text)

-

+

E. Arrest Principles in Detail

(Text)

-

+

1. The First Requirement: an Arrest

(Text)

-

+

2. The Second Requirement: Probable Cause

(Text)

-

+

3. The Third Requirement: a Warrant

(Text)

-

+

4. Statutory Exceptions to the General Rule that an Arrest Warrant is Required

(Text)

-

+

5. The Remedy for an Unlawful Arrest

(Text)

-

+

E. Magistrate Function: Issuing an Arrest Warrant

(Text)

-

+

1. Arrest Warrant - Definition and Requirements

(Text)

-

+

2. Warrant Application Process - Purpose

(Text)

-

+

3. Components of a Valid Arrest Warrant

(Text)

-

+

4. Making an Arrest

(Text)

-

+

5. Presentation to Magistrate

(Text)

-

+

F. Magistrate Function: Providing the Warnings Contained in Article 15.17

(Text)

-

+

1. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

2. Statutory Warnings and other Matters

(Text)

-

+

V. SUBPOENAS

(Text)

-

+

A. The Nature of a Subpoena

(Text)

-

+

1. Availability

(Text)

-

+

2. Defendant's Constitutional Right

(Text)

-

+

B. Definitions

(Text)

-

+

1. Subpoena

(Text)

-

+

2. Subpoena Duces Tecum

(Text)

-

+

C. Requirements

(Text)

-

+

1. Subpoena

(Text)

-

+

2. Subpoena Duces Tecum

(Text)

-

+

D. Subpoena of Out-of-County Witness

(Text)

-

+

1. Availability

(Text)

-

+

2. Application

(Text)

-

+

3. Witness Compensation

(Text)

-

+

4. Limitation

(Text)

-

+

E. Service of the Subpoena

(Text)

-

+

1. Service

(Text)

-

+

2. Duty of Peace Officer

(Text)

-

+

3. Return of Subpoena

(Text)

-

+

F. Enforcement of a Subpoena

(Text)

-

+

1. Fining the Witness

(Text)

-

+

2. Requiring Bail for the Witness

(Text)

-

+

3. Issuing a Writ of Attachment

(Text)

-

+

VI. CHARGING INSTRUMENTS IN A MISDEMEANOR CASE

(Text)

-

+

A. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

B. Complaint and Information

(Text)

-

+

1. Information Defined

(Text)

-

+

2. Requirements of a Sufficient Information

(Text)

-

+

3. Other Requirements of an Information

(Text)

-

+

4. The Requirement of a Complaint

(Text)

-

+

C. Indictment

(Text)

-

+

1. Indictment Defined

(Text)

-

+

2. Requirements of a Sufficient Indictment

(Text)

-

+

3. Other Requirements of an Indictment

(Text)

-

+

4. Form

(Text)

-

+

VII. PRELIMINARY MATTERS

(Text)

-

+

A. Magistrate's Warnings

(Text)

-

+

1. Presentation

(Text)

-

+

2. The Warnings

(Text)

-

+

B. Bail

(Text)

-

+

1. Timing

(Text)

-

+

2. Release

(Text)

-

+

3. Setting Bail

(Text)

-

+

4. Types of Bail

(Text)

-

+

5. Proceeding when Bail is Granted

(Text)

-

+

6. Motion to Reduce Amount of Bail and Release because of Delay

(Text)

-

+

7. Record of Bail

(Text)

-

+

C. Forfeiting Bail

(Text)

-

+

1. Judgment Nisi

(Text)

-

+

2. Issuance of Capias

(Text)

-

+

3. Trial on the Forfeiture

(Text)

-

+

4. Remittitur

(Text)

-

+

D. Appointing Counsel for Indigent Defendants

(Text)

-

+

1. Defendant's Right to Counsel

(Text)

-

+

2. When the Court Must Appoint Counsel

(Text)

-

+

3. Defendant's Request for a Determination of Indigency and Appointment of Counsel

(Text)

-

+

4. Attorney's Representation of Defendant

(Text)

-

+

5. Defendant's Waiver of Attorney

(Text)

-

+

E. Arraignment, Guilty Pleas, and Community Supervision

(Text)

-

+

1. Arraignment

(Text)

-

+

2. Taking the Defendant's Plea of Not Guilty

(Text)

-

+

3. Taking the Defendant's Plea of Guilty or of Nolo Contendere

(Text)

-

+

4. Community Supervision

(Text)

-

+

5. Appeal

(Text)

-

+

VIII. PRETRIAL PROCEEDINGS

(Text)

-

+

A. Pretrial Hearing

(Text)

-

+

1. Scheduling a Pretrial Hearing

(Text)

-

+

2. Notice

(Text)

-

+

3. Trial Record

(Text)

-

+

B. Competency to Stand Trial

(Text)

-

+

1. Constitutional Guarantee and Chapter 46B

(Text)

-

+

2. Presumption of Competency

(Text)

-

+

3. Raising Issue of Competency to Stand Trial

(Text)

-

+

C. Venue

(Text)

-

+

D. Suppression of Evidence

(Text)

-

+

1. Objects or Things

(Text)

-

+

2. Confessions

(Text)

-

+

E. Discovery

(Text)

-

+

1. Overview

(Text)

-

+

2. Partial Disclosure

(Text)

-

+

3. Pro Se Defendants

(Text)

-

+

4. Third-party Disclosure

(Text)

-

+

5. Defense Team Duties

(Text)

-

+

6. Exculpatory Evidence

(Text)

-

+

7. Certification

(Text)

-

+

8. Expert Witnesses

(Text)

-

+

9. Depositions

(Text)

-

+

10. Journalist Shield Law

(Text)

-

+

11. Jailhouse Witnesses

(Text)

-

+

F. Continuance

(Text)

-

+

1. Definition

(Text)

-

+

2. Types of Continuances

(Text)

-

+

3. Motions for Continuance

(Text)

-

+

IX. COURT TRIAL

(Text)

-

+

A. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

B. Trial Proceedings

(Text)

-

+

1. Case Called

(Text)

-

+

2. Reading the Indictment

(Text)

-

+

3. Defendant's Waiver of Right to Jury Trial

(Text)

-

+

4. Defendant's Plea

(Text)

-

+

5. Both Sides Announce Ready

(Text)

-

+

6. Order of Argument

(Text)

-

+

7. Testimony by the Defendant

(Text)

-

+

8. Rendering Judgment

(Text)

-

+

9. Timing of Judgment

(Text)

-

+

10. Punishment

(Text)

-

+

C. Placing Witnesses under the Rule

(Text)

-

+

X. JURY TRIAL

(Text)

-

+

A. Summoning the Jury

(Text)

-

+

1. Potential Jurors Called

(Text)

-

+

2. Juror Exemptions

(Text)

-

+

B. Assembling the Jury

(Text)

-

+

1. Potential Jurors Sworn

(Text)

-

+

2. Challenge to the Array

(Text)

-

+

3. Determining the Qualifications of the Jurors

(Text)

-

+

4. Juror Exemptions

(Text)

-

+

5. Seating the Jurors

(Text)

-

+

6. Request for a Reshuffle

(Text)

-

+

7. Voir Dire: Examination of Jurors

(Text)

-

+

C. The Witness Under Rule

(Text)

-

+

D. Order of Trial

(Text)

-

+

1. Arraignment

(Text)

-

+

2. Information or Indictment Read to Defendant

(Text)

-

+

3. Usual Order of Proceedings

(Text)

-

+

4. Introduction of Testimony

(Text)

-

+

5. Child Witnesses

(Text)

-

+

6. Order of Argument

(Text)

-

+

E. Defendant's Testimony

(Text)

-

+

F. Submitting the Case to the Jury

(Text)

-

+

1. Charging the Jury

(Text)

-

+

2. Jury Foreperson

(Text)

-

+

3. Retirement of the Jury

(Text)

-

+

4. Communication between the Court and the Jury

(Text)

-

+

5. Discharging a Jury

(Text)

-

+

6. Verdict

(Text)

-

+

7. Polling the Jury

(Text)

-

+

8. Entering the Verdict

(Text)

-

+

9. Presence of Defendant

(Text)

-

+

G. Rendering Judgment

(Text)

-

+

H. Punishment

(Text)

-

+

1. Verdict

(Text)

-

+

2. When the Judge Assesses Punishment

(Text)

-

+

3. Evidence of Prior Criminal Record

(Text)

-

+

XI. JUDGMENT AND SENTENCING

(Text)

-

+

A. Judgment

(Text)

-

+

B. Additional Findings Included in Judgment

(Text)

-

+

1. Finding of Family Violence

(Text)

-

+

2. Hate Crime Finding

(Text)

-

+

3. Finding that Controlled Substance used to Commit Offense

(Text)

-

+

4. Finding of Victim's Age

(Text)

-

+

5. Finding of Motor Fuel Theft

(Text)

-

+

6. Finding Regarding Victims of Trafficking or other Abuse

(Text)

-

+

7. Finding Regarding Gang-Related Conduct

(Text)

-

+

8. Finding Regarding Improper Teacher-Student Relationship

(Text)

-

+

9. Finding Regarding Official Misconduct

(Text)

-

+

10. Finding Regarding Health Care Professionals

(Text)

-

+

11. Finding Regarding Corrections Employees

(Text)

-

+

12. Victim Impact Statement

(Text)

-

+

C. Sentence

(Text)

-

+

1. Definition

(Text)

-

+

2. Alternative Sentencing

(Text)

-

+

3. Community Service

(Text)

-

+

4. Restitution

(Text)

-

+

5. In Absence of Defendant

(Text)

-

+

6. Pronouncing Sentence; Time; Time Credit

(Text)

-

+

7. Reasons to Prevent Sentence

(Text)

-

+

8. Cumulative or Concurrent Sentences

(Text)

-

+

9. Commencement of Sentence; Status During Appeal; Pen Packet

(Text)

-

+

D. Discharging Judgment for Fine

(Text)

-

+

E. Payment of Fine

(Text)

-

+

F. Fine Discharged

(Text)

-

+

PART TWO: SUMMARY OF SELECTED MISDEMEANOR OFFENSES

(Text)

-

+

I. DEFINITIONS OF CULPABLE MENTAL STATES

(Text)

-

+

A. Intentionally

(Text)

-

+

B. Knowingly

(Text)

-

+

C. Recklessly

(Text)

-

+

D. Criminal Negligence

(Text)

-

+

II. SUMMARY: ASSAULT

(Text)

-

+

A. Bodily Injury

(Text)

-

+

1. Elements

(Text)

-

+

2. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

B. Threats of Imminent Bodily Injury

(Text)

-

+

1. Elements

(Text)

-

+

2. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

C. Offensive or Provocative Bodily Contact

(Text)

-

+

1. Elements

(Text)

-

+

2. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

D. Additional Family Violence Charging Options

(Text)

-

+

III. SUMMARY: DEADLY CONDUCT

(Text)

-

+

A. Dangerous Conduct

(Text)

-

+

1. Elements

(Text)

-

+

2. Presumption - Firearm

(Text)

-

+

3. Classification

(Text)

-

+

B. Discharging a Firearm

(Text)

-

+

IV. SUMMARY: TERRORISTIC THREAT

(Text)

-

+

A. Intent to Cause a Reaction

(Text)

-

+

B. Other Threats

(Text)

-

+

V. SUMMARY: ENTICING A CHILD

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements

(Text)

-

+

B. Classification

(Text)

-

+

VI. SUMMARY: CRIMINAL MISCHIEF

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements

(Text)

-

+

1. Damage to Property

(Text)

-

+

2. Tampering with Property

(Text)

-

+

3. Marking Property

(Text)

-

+

B. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

VII. SUMMARY: CRIMINAL TRESPASS

(Text)

-

+

A. Prior Notice

(Text)

-

+

1. Elements

(Text)

-

+

2. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

B. Agricultural Land

(Text)

-

+

C. Defenses

(Text)

-

+

D. Definitions

(Text)

-

+

1. Entry

(Text)

-

+

2. Notice

(Text)

-

+

3. Shelter Center

(Text)

-

+

4. Forest Land

(Text)

-

+

5. Agricultural Land

(Text)

-

+

6. Superfund Site

(Text)

-

+

7. Critical Infrastructure Facility

(Text)

-

+

8. Protected Freshwater Area

(Text)

-

+

9. Recognized State

(Text)

-

+

10. Recreational Vehicle Park

(Text)

-

+

11. Residential Land

(Text)

-

+

VIII. SUMMARY: THEFT

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements

(Text)

-

+

1. Without Consent

(Text)

-

+

2. Stolen Property

(Text)

-

+

3. Custody of Law Enforcement

(Text)

-

+

B. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

1. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

2. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

3. Enhancement

(Text)

-

+

C. Evidentiary and Miscellaneous Matters

(Text)

-

+

D. Defenses

(Text)

-

+

IX. THEFT OF SERVICE

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements

(Text)

-

+

1. Deception, Threat, Or False Token

(Text)

-

+

2. Diversion

(Text)

-

+

3. Rental Agreement

(Text)

-

+

4. Refusal to Pay

(Text)

-

+

B. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

1. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

2. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

C. Presumptions

(Text)

-

+

D. Notice

(Text)

-

+

X. SUMMARY: PRESUMPTION OF THEFT BY CHECK

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements Triggering Presumption

(Text)

-

+

B. No Presumption

(Text)

-

+

C. Notice

(Text)

-

+

D. Direct Evidence

(Text)

-

+

E. Partial Restitution

(Text)

-

+

F. Theft of Property Presumption

(Text)

-

+

XI. SUMMARY: UNLAWFUL CARRYING OF WEAPONS

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements

(Text)

-

+

B. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

XII. SUMMARY: DELIVERY OF MARIHUANA

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements

(Text)

-

+

B. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

1. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

2. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

XIII. SUMMARY: POSSESSION OF MARIHUANA AND SYNTHETIC MARIHUANA

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements

(Text)

-

+

B. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

1. Introduction

(Text)

-

+

2. Classifications

(Text)

-

+

C. Good Samaritan Defense

(Text)

-

+

XIV. SUMMARY: ALCOHOL & INTOXICATION OFFENSES

(Text)

-

+

A. Elements - Driving While Intoxicated

(Text)

-

+

B. Elements - Driving While Intoxicated With Child Passenger

(Text)

-

+

C. Elements - Flying While Intoxicated

(Text)

-

+

D. Elements - Boating While Intoxicated

(Text)

-

+

E. Elements - Assembling or Operating an Amusement Ride While Intoxicated

(Text)

-

+

F. Punishment - Operating While Intoxicated

(Text)

-

+

G. Enhanced Punishments and Penalties

(Text)

-

+

1. Operating while Intoxicated

(Text)

-

+

2. Second Offense

(Text)

-

+

3. Third Offense

(Text)

-

+

4. Ten-year Rule

(Text)

-

+

H. Final Convictions

(Text)

-

+

I. Possession of Alcoholic Beverage in Motor Vehicle

(Text)

-

+

J. Public Intoxication

(Text)

-

+

1. Elements

(Text)

-

+

2. Defense

(Text)

-

+

3. Punishment

(Text)

-

+

4. Lesser-Included Offense

(Text)

-

+

K. Defenses

(Text)

-

+

L. Proof of Mental State

(Text)

-

+

M. Definitions

(Text)

-

  


Judicial Education Center

The Texas Association of Counties County Judges Education Advisory Committee has provided basic support services for producing judicial education programs for constitutional county judges and court personnel since 1984.

The goal of the Texas Association of Counties County Judges Education Advisory Committee is to develop a progressive judicial education curriculum for constitutional county judges and court personnel designed for the unique needs of new judges, experienced judges, court personnel and county judges with limited judicial responsibilities.

The County Judges Benchbook is provided here as an informational research tool only and is NOT a substitute for legal counsel. If you have any questions please contact TAC for assistance.

Judicial Staff:

Hon. Stephanie Moreno,
Judicial Program Manager,
(StephanieM@county.org)

Hon. Tramer Woytek,
Judicial Resource Liaison,
(TramerW@county.org)

Michele Mund,
Education & Event Services Manager,
(MicheleM@county.org)

Ashley Royer,
Project Manager,
(AshleyR@county.org)

Regan Fruge,
Judicial Project Coordinator,
(ReganF@county.org)

Helpful Numbers

Judicial hotline:
(844) CoJudge or (844) 265-8343

TAC toll free in Texas:
(800) 456-5974
(512) 478-8753

Email:
judicialhotline@county.org