An Assault Charge is Dropped and a Drug Possession Case Earns Pretrial Diversion

Possession of Multiple Drugs After a Traffic Stop

Chuck Lanehart was hired in the fall of 2020 by two young ladies in their early twenties who were stopped traveling through Lubbock County after a trip to California, Las Vegas and other vacation spots. Their vehicle was searched, and officers found a variety of recreational drugs: marijuana, THC, psilocybin (mushrooms) and methamphetamine. They were facing the prospect of 2-20 years in prison from felony charges.

Chuck was able to shed doubt on the legality of the stop, which alleged a violation of section 545.051 of the Texas Transportation Code. The driver was suspected of driving too long in the passing lane, but the officer never inquired whether the driver was preparing to turn left, an exception to the statute. In addition, Chuck presented the prosecutor a packet of mitigating evidence for each client. In February of 2021, the prosecutor offered the clients a pretrial diversion.

If the young ladies complete the terms of a one-year pretrial diversion, their cases will be dismissed, and they will be eligible for an expunction.

A Self Defense Act Turns Into an Assault Charge

Chuck Lanehart’s client was accused of assault by strangulation/choking, a second-degree felony. The client was hosting a party in his backyard when one of his guests became intoxicated. The guest insulted the other guests, including the client’s wife, and at one point got in the client’s face and threatened to strike the client. The client acted in self-defense by throwing the guest to the ground and holding him down until the guest calmed down. However, the guest and his family members told a different story, and the client was facing charges of assault by strangulation/choking and a sentence of 2-20 years in prison.

Chuck presented a packet of material to the prosecutor, who provided the material to the grand jury investigating the matter. The material included a summary of the facts from the client’s perspective, affidavits from witnesses to the incident, a short brief on the law of self-defense, and good character evidence on behalf of the client. The grand jury “no-billed” the client, meaning he will not face any charges as a result of the accusation.

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