Houston Kidnapping Lawyer
A kidnapping accusation can be very upsetting. A person who has been charged with kidnapping needs the assistance of a skilled criminal defense attorney. Kidnapping charges can arise for a number of reasons, such as a parent being accused of taking his own child or as a misunderstanding between two people. Being convicted of this serious charge can result in substantial time in confinement. A suspect who has an experienced kidnapping attorney may be able to successfully fight against his charges.
Definition of Kidnapping
The charge of kidnapping is described in §20.03 of The Texas Penal Code. It is a result of abducting someone, which means to take a person and attempt to prevent his or her rescued by keeping the person in a location where he or she is unlikely to be found or by threatening violence against the person. The motive for kidnapping is typically intertwined with a monetary benefit, such as acquiring a ransom or award, but this is not always the case.
Potential Punishments for Kidnapping
Chapter 12 of the Texas Penal Code provides information about the punishments that someone can receive if convicted of kidnapping. This charge is a third-degree felony, which can result in a prison sentence between two and ten years and/or a fine up to $10,000. However, the punishment may be more severe if any of the following factors applies:
- The defendant has a prior criminal history
- The defendant is a habitual offender
- The defendant is a repeat felony offender
- The defendant used a weapon during the kidnapping
- The victim was a senior citizen or a child
- The kidnapping resulted in the victim’s death or the victim was seriously injured
Defenses to Kidnapping Charges
A skilled kidnapping attorney will explore all possible defenses. If a defendant can demonstrate that the person who was allegedly abducted was a relative, he or she did not use violence and no ulterior motives existed, he or she may be able to have the charges dropped or reduced. Defendants may have other defenses available based on the circumstances of their case, such as an alibi, coercion, mistaken identity or lack of knowledge or intent. A parent who seeks to lawfully control his child may have an affirmative defense against the crime of kidnapping. Additionally, if the alleged victim was left in a safe place, the charge can be reduced to a second-degree felony. A kidnapping attorney can help devise the best defense for your case.
Call a Houston Kidnapping Lawyer
Gary S. Miller is a specialized Houston kidnapping lawyer. He will put his experience as a former Harris County prosecutor to work for defendants who need his valuable legal services.
Schedule a confidential review of your legal case with the Miller Law Group, PLLC today by calling 713-866-6233.