As all Texas residents know, there are a wide variety of crimes in the state of which an individual may be prosecuted and convicted. Any potential conviction should be taken seriously by an accused as sentences can include substantial jail time, large fines, and a criminal record. Damage to one’s reputation is also a serious problem associated with conviction or even an accusation. Unfortunately, particularly in smaller communities, word of criminal proceedings against a community member travels fast and can have even faster consequences on that individual’s job prospects, ability to rent or buy a home and even obtain child custody. This is why vigorous criminal defense is so vital in all criminal cases.

A local Texas news source recently posted a list of 2012’s “Crimes of the Year.” These crimes are centered around the theme of the seven deadly sins, ranging from lust to gluttony to envy. In one instance, a 65 year-old Texas resident took revenge on a teenager for mocking her earlier that day. The resident sprayed the teen with pepper spray. She was later charged with assault causing bodily injury. In another, a neighbor reportedly witnessed a man molest his dog.

This story may seem to address crime and conviction in a rather flippant matter. The crimes listed are be somewhat extreme, but there is still a legal process and real life consequences behind the stories.

Vigorous criminal defense is incredibly vital in any serious allegation. The consequences of conviction are too big to take lightly. A fair legal system, such as that running in Texas, will not find an individual guilty unless such guilt is proved beyond a reasonable doubt. This is a very high standard in the court system. Any holes in the prosecution’s case, including a lack of evidence, or faulty theories, could mean a not guilty verdict for the defendant. However, it is often up to the defense attorney or the defendant to point out such inadequacies to a judge or a jury.

Source: Houston Press, “Texas crimes of the year, 2012,” John Nova Lomax, Dec. 26, 2012.