Experienced Fayette County DWI & Criminal Defense Lawyer

Fayette1
Fayette County Courthouse

An arrest in Fayette County, Texas, can leave you worried about your future. You may think the odds are against you. But do not give up. With the right criminal defense attorney handling your case, you can fight the charge.

At Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C., we represent clients throughout Fayette County and help them get their lives back. We provide smart, aggressive criminal defense. But don't delay, contact our office immediately for a free initial consultation.

Charged with a Crime in Fayette County? Benefits of Early Representation

Have you been charged with a crime in Fayette County, Texas? If so, your options for representation are limited. You may be tempted to hold off finding a qualified attorney to represent your case because you simply do not want to deal with it. It is work to find the right attorney. It can also be overwhelming.

Just imagine: google “criminal defense lawyer” and pages after pages of search engine results spew out one attorney after another. You can't pick any attorney blindly because the first on the page may be there only because he/she must spend a lot of money on advertising while the last one on the page may not have the qualifications necessary to represent you.

If you wait until the last minute to find an attorney, you may have a limited pool of attorneys from which to choose, and that could impact the quality of your defense. That's true not only because that attorney may not have the skill set your case needs, and that attorney may not have enough time to prepare properly for the case.

The stakes are too high in criminal cases. You need to find a seasoned and skilled criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. The benefits could include:

  • Improved chances of a positive outcome;
  • More time to investigate the facts and circumstances of the case;
  • More space for negotiations with the prosecutor; and
  • Better opportunities to employ defense strategies specific to your case.

Early representation also allows you to build a relationship with the attorney. You will discuss confidential matters, so you need to be able to trust your attorney completely. Rushing into it limits what you are able to do -- and what your attorney is able to do.

What Should You Look For in a Criminal Defense Lawyer?

When you conduct your search to find the right attorney for you, there are three specific qualifications you may want to consider: (1) Board Certification; (2) trial experience; and (3) client testimony.

  1. Board Certification. Only Board Certified attorneys are legally able to claim themselves as specialists in a particular practice area. The Texas Board of Legal Specialization certifies attorneys in Texas in criminal law. The National College of DUI Defense, accredited by the American Bar Association and also recognized by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, certifies attorneys throughout the U.S. in DWI / DUI law. Certification is important because it serves as an indicator that the attorney is vetted and proven as a highly experienced and knowledgeable lawyer in that practice area.
  2. Trial Experience. You want to make sure the attorney you choose has ample trial experience and indeed pursues trial over plea deals. Plea deals are best for the prosecution but usually not always for persons charged with a crime because you could still possibly end up with a conviction, even if it is a reduced charged and lighter sentence, and that charge results in a criminal record that will affect your future in more ways than you might initially think. An attorney who is committed to you is committed to a trial if that is what it takes to get the charges dismissed before trial or you acquitted at trial.
  3. Client Testimony. Former clients are the best way to know how determined and qualified a criminal defense attorney is. You can learn a wealth of things, like if the attorney responds promptly to client phone calls, if the attorney keeps clients updated on the case, if the attorney consults with clients about all matters of their case, among many other things. This will give you a better understanding of the attorney and if you two might be a good fit.

Doug Murphy, you get what you would expect in an attorney:

  • Doug Murphy is Board Certified in both criminal law and DWI defense. He is one of only two lawyers in all of Texas who has earned board certification in criminal and DWI defense law.
  • Doug Murphy always anticipates trial even if the case does not go to trial. He prepares diligently while also working to get the case dismissed through appropriate motions and negotiations.
  • Doug Murphy is also the recipient of numerous client testimonies that confirm his capabilities as a qualified, aggressive, smart lawyer. A lawyer who knows how to effectively navigate the courtroom and persuade jurors to side with his clients in finding reasonable doubt.

In addition, Doug Murphy has also been recognized and voted by other lawyers as a Texas Super Lawyer and one of the Best Lawyers in America just to name a few accolades for his skill and is often invited to speak before other attorneys to provide insight and new skills those attorneys can use in their own practices. Both his clients and the legal community recognize his capabilities.

Criminal Cases Represented by Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. in Fayette County

Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. represents criminal cases that involve DWI as well as other criminal activity. Below is a summary of his services.

DWI Offenses

Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is illegal in Texas. You can be arrested if you are suspected of illegally driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In Texas, the legal limit for blood alcohol content is 0.08 percent for all drivers with the exception of commercial drivers and minors. Commercial drivers can be arrested if their BAC is at or above 0.04%. But for minors, any amount of alcohol can get your arrested -- Texas has a zero-tolerance policy.

Many drivers think that because there is a breath or blood test indicating they were over the legal limit that they will be convicted regardless of what they do. So, they plead guilty or do not try to fight it.

But you can fight a DWI charge or a DWI-related charge.

An experienced Fayette County DWI lawyer will be able to (1) identify if any constitutional rights have been violated; or (2) understand the procedural, technical and scientific nature of breath and blood test results and identify any inaccuracies or mistakes made in the handling or administration of the tests.

Part of Doug Murphy's strategy is to review the evidence thoroughly to identify any of the following:

  • the constitutionality of the stop.
  • the constitutionality of any search and seizure.
  • the constitutionality of the administration of roadside tests.
  • the constitutionality of the probable cause to arrest.
  • the constitutionality of the Miranda rights.
  • the manner in which roadside tests were given.
  • the use of any blood or breath test
  • the chain of custody of blood and breath tests.

Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. represents the following DWI cases:

Criminal Offenses

It is almost always in your best interests to plead not guilty to a criminal charge. Pleading guilty effectively ends all chances of defending yourself. By pleading not guilty, you have an automatic right to a trial. This gives your attorney the time to build your case. At Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C., we believe everyone is innocent until provide guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, and at trial, we hold the judge and jury accountable for the same.

Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. has experience representing a wide range of criminal offenses:

Collateral Consequences: What They Are & Why They Are Important

A conviction carries with it a sentence, and that could entail jail and/or fines. What many do not consider are the collateral consequences that follow a conviction. A conviction means a criminal record. Whenever anyone conducts a background check on you, that criminal record will appear.

The following are situations when a criminal record could affect your life:

The only way to prevent collateral consequences is fighting for your freedom against a conviction. Doug Murphy is committed to the same.

Building a Defense at the Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C.

Doug Murphy will approach your case from all angles. Defenses include denial -- you did not commit the crime. Other defenses include affirmative defenses where you admit guilt but have a justifiable reason for it. These include:

A good defense also includes using motions properly to have evidence suppressed. As you know, your case will be different from any other case, and the defense strategy will be based specifically on the unique facts and circumstances of your case.

Fayette County Court System

The Fayette County Court System is like most other Texas county court systems. There are municipal courts and Justice of the Peace courts that oversee simple traffic violations or city ordinance violations. Each county has one County Court at Law, but some counties have more depending on needs -- Fayette County only has one, and its jurisdiction covers Class A and Class B misdemeanors. All counties also have at least one District Court assigned to it. District courts oversee felony matters. Fayette County has only one District Court that it shares with another county.

County Court at Law of Fayette County TX

There is only one county court at law in Fayette County.
County Court at Law
Ed Janecka, Judge
151 North Washington Street
Room 301,
La Grange, TX 78945
Phone: 936-968-6469

Judge Janecka was first elected in 2010, winning the election unopposed. In 2014, he ran again as the Republican candidate, defeating Cecil R. Webster in the general election held on November 4, 2014. His term ends at the end of 2018, and he will not be seeking re-election.

Judicial District Courts of Fayette County TX

There is one District Court that operates in and supports Fayette County: the 155th Judicial District. This same District Court also services Austin County. The Court operates in Austin County most of the time, but a certain number of days are allotted to Fayette County. To find out which days the court operates in Fayette County, you can check the court's calendar.

155th District Court
Judge Jeff R. Steinhauser
151 North Washington Street
Room 201
La Grange, TX 78945
Phone: 979-968-8500

The current judge, Judge Jeff Steinhauser, is a member of the Republican party. He won in the general election in November 2010 against Alan Folger. In November 2014, he won the general election unopposed. Before he became a judge, he was a city attorney for the cities of Moulton and Waelder, Texas, before becoming a private attorney. He graduated with his law degree from the University of Houston Law Center in 1990.

Fayette County Adult Probation

If you are placed on probation or parole, your program will be supervised by the Fayette County Community Supervision and Corrections Department, otherwise known as the Adult Probation.

Fayette County Probation Department
227 North Main Street
La Grange, TX 78945
Phone: 979-968-3814

Fayette County Jail & Prison Facilities

If you are convicted of a crime and are sentenced to jail, you may be sentenced to a county jail, state jail, state prison.

  • If you are convicted of a misdemeanor, you could be sentenced to the Fayette County jail.
  • If you are convicted of a state jail felony, you could be sentenced to a state jail located outside of Fayette County.
  • If you are convicted of a third-degree felony or higher, you could be sentenced to a state prison outside of Fayette County.

In Fayette County, there is one jail, and that is the county jail. If your sentencing involved a felony, you will likely be sent out of the counter to serve your time. You can look up an offender at a Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) facility by using their online offender search tool.

Fayette County Jail

If you have been arrested by an officer from the Department of Public Safety (DPS), the Sheriff's office, or a local police department, then you were probably booked into the Fayette County Jail.

Fayette County Jail
1646 North Jefferson
La Grange, TX 78945
Phone: 979-968-5856

Fayette County Law Enforcement Agencies

There are a number of law enforcement agencies throughout Fayette County, but three that you are most likely to encounter is Patrol, the Sheriff, or local police officers.

Texas Highway Patrol

As a division of DPS, officers patrol the highways and address traffic violations as well as other criminal activity that occur on those highways.

Texas Highway Patrol
243 South College
La Grange, TX 78945
Phone: 979-968-4054

 

Fayette County Sheriff's Office

The Fayette County Sheriff's Office is trusted with overseeing and investigating criminal activity throughout Fayette County that is not served by the local police.

Fayette County Sheriff's Department
Sheriff Keith Korenek
151 North Washington Street
La Grange, TX 78945
Phone: 936-968-5856

Local Police

The local police supervise all crimes that occur locally. In Fayette County, there are less than a handful of police departments because the population is so scarce in the county.

La Grange Police Department
Chief David Gilbreath
243 South College
La Grange, TX 78945
Phone: 979-968-5806

Flatonia Police Department
Chief Perry Kram
125 E. South Main
Flatonia, TX 78941
Phone: 361-865-3337

Schulenburg Police Department
Chief Troy Brenek
607 Upton
Schulenburg, TX 78956
Phone: 979-743-2677

 

Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. Representation

Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. is based in Houston, Texas, but it provides legal services throughout the region. If you live in any of the following cities or any surrounding area throughout Fayette County, Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. will provide criminal defense.

Experienced DWI Defense & Criminal Defense Lawyers in Fayette County, Texas

Doug Murphy's philosophy that grounds his practice is simple: you are innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Whether you are truly innocent or made a mistake, Doug Murphy will develop a defense that works in your favor to optimize chances of a positive outcome. At Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C., we believe everyone deserves a strong defense, and as your constitutional right, we commit to that defense.

If you have been charged with a DWI or another criminal offense and want to fight it, retain a DWI and criminal defense attorney committed to the same. At Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C., you get commitment and results. Contact Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. today at (713) 229-8333 for a consultation.

Contact Us Today

If you are facing DWI or other criminal charges in Texas, contact our office today to discuss your case, so we can begin working on your defense. Please provide only your personal email and cell phone number so that we can immediately and confidentially communicate with you.

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