It is no secret that drug problems (including fatal drug overdoses) across the United States – and across Texas – have become more and more serious in recent years. Some jurisdictions have Good Samaritan laws in place, which legally protect individuals who call for medical assistance when a friend (or they themselves) overdose on drugs. Moreover, individuals who call to report that they have overdosed may not be subject to criminal prosecution in these jurisdictions, assuming that they cooperate.
However, this type of immunity does not exist in the State of Texas. In fact, reporting your own or someone else’s drug overdose can subject you to criminal drug charges and prosecution. The same holds true if you sell drugs to a person who later suffers a serious bodily injury – or dies – as a result.
If you have been criminally charged for a drug overdose in Texas, the experienced Austin criminal defense lawyers at Granger and Mueller PC are here for you. Our knowledgeable legal team can assist you with defending against your criminal drug overdose charge. We can also represent you at a sentencing hearing in order to minimize the consequences of a conviction.
Texas Controlled Substances Act
Drug charges, including those that result from overdoses, are treated extremely harshly in Texas. In fact, the State of Texas has some of the harshest and most conservative drug laws in the country. The Texas Controlled Substances Act is a state statute that sets forth the various penalties that can be imposed upon conviction of a drug charge. The potential penalties for Texas drug offenses vary, depending upon the type of drug at issue, whether you sold/distributed the drug or just possessed it, and the amount of the drug that is found in your possession. Some of the potential penalties imposed by the Texas Controlled Substances Act include the following:
- Between three and 180 days of incarceration, along with a maximum $2,000 fine, if you are convicted of DWI (driving while intoxicated)
- Between 180 days and two years of incarceration – and a maximum monetary fine of $10,000 – if you are convicted of manufacturing/delivering a small amount of a controlled substance or possessing a controlled substance
- A maximum of 180 days of incarceration, along with a maximum $2,000 fine, if you are convicted of possessing marijuana – or dangerous drug possession (which can result in a maximum of life imprisonment and a $250,000 fine)
If you are facing one or more of these criminal drug charges or penalties, the Austin criminal defense lawyers at Granger and Mueller PC will work to reduce your penalty and keep you out of jail.
Defenses to Texas Drug Charges
In Texas drug cases, including those that involve overdoses, the state prosecutor has the legal burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. As a defendant in the case, you may be able to advance one or more of the following legal defenses in response to your criminal drug charge:
- That you lacked the necessary knowledge or intent
- That you possessed an insufficient quantity of the drug for successful prosecution
- That the prosecution failed to satisfy the required burden of proof
The experienced Austin criminal defense attorneys at Granger and Mueller PC will work hard to formulate a strong legal defense on your behalf.
Speak to an Experienced Austin Criminal Defense Lawyer Today
If you are facing a Texas drug charge resulting from a drug overdose, the legal team at Granger and Mueller PC is ready to help. To schedule a free consultation and case evaluation with an experienced Austin criminal defense attorney, please call us at (512) 474-9999 or contact us online today to learn more.