Frequently Asked Questions

What is Criminal Defense?

Criminal defense is the process of defending the rights of a person accused of a crime. It is your Constitutional right to defend yourself of criminal accusations. If you have been arrested or have a warrant active for your arrest, it is time to seek legal counsel. Understand that you are presumed innocent unless the State can prove the case against you beyond a reasonable doubt, and this is how we can help.

What should I do if I am pulled over for suspicion of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)?

Deciding whether or not to take the field sobriety tests is a personal decision. We have seen people who are completely sober fail the tests, and we have seen sober people perform very well on the tests. You are not required to perform the field sobriety tests.

Should I submit a Breath Specimen?

Whether or not to submit a breath specimen is a personal decision. What the arresting officer may not tell you is that the breath test machine is assuming a myriad of factors (i.e. blood/breath ratio, body temperature, etc.) in order to guess what it believes to be your blood alcohol content. If you do not feel comfortable trusting your freedom to a machine that you know nothing about, then you may refuse to provide a specimen or your breath. You can say no to breath tests.

I was arrested for suspicion of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). Is my license automatically suspended?

The Officer most likely provided you with a Notice of Suspension - Temporary Driving Permit. This document temporarily acts as your driver's license, and it explains that your license may be suspended for your arrest for suspicion of driving while intoxicated. You have only 15 days from receipt of this document to request a hearing to contest the suspension of your driver's license. This is a very time sensitive matter, and it is important that you or your attorney request this hearing. Find Out More

Should I give an officer my breath because if I don't they can take my blood with a warrant anyway?

If you consent, you have waived very valuable rights and very valuable potential challenges to the admissibility of the specimen.

Is blood an accurate measurement of alcohol concentration?

Gas chromatography is the method by which a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is measured. While it can be a reliable scientific method, in the hands of law enforcement, generally accepted industry standards are quite frequently compromised. Find Out More

Do I have to allow an officer to search my home or car?

Subject to a few limited exceptions, if an officer does not have a warrant, you do not have to permit a search; however, officers do not have to advise you that you have the right to refuse their search. Consequently, there are any number of coercive statements, or outright lies that officers use to obtain your consent to search. For example, officers may say "if you have nothing to hide, then surely you don't have a problem with me looking around," or "if you don't let me look now, I'll just get a warrant." You have the right to just say no to unauthorized police searches.

Is it possible to inadvertently consent to a police search?

Generally, if a citizen consents to a search, they have waived Fourth Amendment protection. In order to be a valid search, a citizen's consent must be voluntary. Thus if an officer asks "would you mind opening your trunk," even though the officer is not directly asking for consent to search the vehicle, by opening the trunk a citizen has in effect consented to the search. Don't be misled, you have a right to say no to an officer's request to search.

Can police officers ever search a person's garbage?

You may think that your right to privacy extends to your garbage, but Courts now routinely hold that once trash is discarded for pickup a citizen's expectation for privacy is lost. Police don't even have to have reasonable suspicion that you are involved in criminal activity to examine your garbage. Often times police will seize and search garbage if there is insufficient information to obtain a warrant. DON'T LET YOUR TRASH INCRIMINATE YOU.

Is it true that police officers can record citizens without their knowledge or consent?

Yes, in fact, police are taught to employ a myriad of tricky recording tactics. For example, police sometimes detain or arrest multiple people, put them in the police car together, shut the door, and unbeknownst to the occupants, record their conversation. As police try to at busy outside the car, they are hoping that the detainees will talk to each other and either admit or provide evidence that will be used against them. Further, local police now have recording devices that record simultaneously inside and outside the vehicle. Even the most innocent comment, gesture, or movement can be argued by the prosecutor as being abnormal or indicative of a crime or intoxication.

My case was dismissed. Why does it still appear on my criminal record?

Even though your case was dismissed, the arrest will remain on your criminal history unless you petition for and are granted an expunction. An expunction is a civil suit that is necessary to rid your record of an arrest. If an expunction is granted, under current law, you may legally deny the occurrence of the arrest, except when questioned under oath in a criminal proceeding about an arrest for which the records have been expunged. Find out more

How can I see what is on my criminal history?

It is important to obtain a copy of your official criminal history from the Texas Department of Public Safety if for no other reason other than to see if there are errors on the report.

I felt uncomfortable with my bondsman making innuendos about certain attorneys and pressuring me to hire a certain attorney. Is this proper?

Bondsman are strictly prohibited from referring, directly or indirectly, clientele to specific attorneys for representation. Such referrals are a criminal offense. Bondman have cash or other collateral on record with the county. Each time they post a bond, that amount of their collateral is tied up until the case is disposed. Thus, the sooner a person's case ends, the sooner the bondsman can use their collateral to post another bond. Beware, bondsmen have their own selfish agenda in sending people to a "plea attorney."

Where do I go for court in Hays County?

Felony and misdemeanor cases are heard in the Hays County Justice Center Building located at 712 South Stagecoach Trail in San Marcos, Hays County, Texas. Class C misdemeanor court settings may be held in other locations.

Know Your Rights. Protect Your Future.

Billy McNabb Attorney At Law is here to defend you. If you have a criminal defense case contact us today.

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