What’s the Difference Between Aiding, Abetting, and Accessory to a Crime?

You may be familiar with these terms after hearing them in your favorite late-night crime drama, but these charges aren’t just fiction. Aiding, abetting and accessory to a crime both carry harsh sentences in Texas, often similar to those given to the person who committed the crime. While they may sound similar, the qualifications for these charges are different. Knowing the differences between the two could make a Read More

What is a Lack of Criminal Intent?

Before anyone can be convicted of a crime, Texas law specifies that they must have knowingly or intentionally committed the action they’re accused of. While this may sound like a semantic point, proving criminal intent is an essential part of the Texas rule of law. How your attorney handles criminal intent could make or break your case, so knowledge of criminal intent is integral to a quality defense. To start, a Read More

What Does “No Refusal” Mean for Texas Drivers?

You’re likely familiar with the phrase “No Refusal” in reference to Texas DWI arrests. Many Texans, however, believe that this means you legally cannot refuse a breathalyzer or field sobriety test, which is untrue. While you may still refuse the tests, the purpose of the no refusal initiative is to crack down on DWI suspects by fully enforcing the implied consent laws of Texas, so there will likely be harsh Read More

5 Ways you may Unwittingly Violate a Protective Order

If you’ve become the subject of a protective order, it is absolutely essential that you fully understand and abide by the rules set out within the order. Violating a protective order can carry heavy sentences, and it may be easier than you think. Here are some important things to watch out for if you’re now involved in a protective order: Communicating with someone in the petitioner’s household or family It’s Read More

Understanding Your Plea Options in Texas

You’ve been arrested, and now you’re standing in court before a judge. He or she looks at you and asks how you plead. What do you say? Of course, you’ll have your lawyer by your side (or at least you should!), and he or she will advise you on how to respond. In Texas and courts all over the United States, defendants have three potential responses—or pleas—and this is one of the most important decisions you make when Read More

What is a Texas Protective Order, and What Does it Mean For Subjects?

Before we explain anything else about protective orders in Texas, it is important for you to understand that becoming a subject of a protective order does not mean you have been charged with a crime. Protective orders can be a precursor to certain criminal charges. And, violating the terms of a protective order is likely to be a criminal charge. However, there is no reason to panic if you have been served with a Read More

A Primer on Money Laundering in the 21st Century

Many people hear the words “money laundering” and think of Al Capone, the mob, and 1920s bootlegging operations. It’s true—the term is much more likely to evoke a certain aesthetic in the minds of people than an actual understanding of the crime itself.  The giveaway is actually in the name. Money laundering is the act of concealing or obscuring the monetary proceeds from illegal operations (such as drug trafficking Read More

New Texas Firearm Laws Take Effect

Permits are no longer required to carry handguns in Texas. In June 2021, Gov. Greg Abbott signed legislation that supporters describe as “constitutional carry.” It’s also commonly referred to as “permitless carry” and, on Sept. 1, 2021, became law in Texas.  Prior to this law taking effect, Texans who were otherwise eligible to possess and carry firearms (more on that below) had to submit fingerprints, take a Read More

Charles A. Banker Selected to Super Lawyers

I am honored to announce my selection to the 2021 Super Lawyers list, where I was recognized as a top-rated Criminal Defense Lawyer. Super Lawyers designates no more than five percent of attorneys in Texas based on experience and expertise in their field, achievement, and a peer-influenced rating system. I want to thank my many current and former clients for allowing me to serve and give them my best!    See Read More

What Exactly Are Mitigating Factors in a Criminal Case?

Sometimes, despite a perfect defense strategy, a criminal defendant will be found guilty by a judge or jury. Perhaps the evidence was too convincing, or the prosecution was just fortunate.  After the jury returns a guilty verdict in a Texas criminal trial, the case moves to the sentencing phase. That does not mean the defense attorney’s job is done. Before the judge hands down the sentence, both sides may present Read More