The Three Strikes Law

Though each individual criminal case is to be considered solely upon the merits of the evidence and testimony presented by the prosecution and the defense, the sentencing phase involves a much broader and subtler evaluation of matters. For example, a judge may hear statements from both the defendant and from the victim and his or her associates. A defendant who appears to be genuinely contrite may receive a lighter sentence than someone who exhibits no remorse. Another factor that is weighed is whether or not it is a first offense for the defendant or whether there is an established pattern of criminal behavior.

This can be an especially important element of sentencing if a defendant is facing a third conviction due to the effects of the relatively new Three Strikes law. Under this law, conviction for a third offense requires that a judge impose a mandatory sentence of 25 years to life in prison for some crimes. If you have been charged with a crime and are in need of legal assistance, contact Austin criminal defense lawyer Ian Inglis at (512) 472-1950 to begin preparing your case.

The Reality of Three Strikes Laws

The United States Supreme Court has upheld the legality of Three Strikes laws, even in situations where the third offense is something that appears to be almost trivial. In Texas, for example, a man was sentenced to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole for refusal to repay a disgruntled customer for a $120.75 air conditioning repair bill. The perception is that if you have engaged in more egregious crimes in the past and appear to be unreformed, then even a minor crime is indicative that you are at risk of continuing to endanger the wellbeing or property of others - whether this is truly the case or not.

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If you have been charged with a crime, you will need an experienced legal professional to protect your rights and freedoms. Contact Austin criminal lawyer Ian Inglis at (512) 472-1950 for more information.

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