Portrait of Chuck Lanehart

Chuck Lanehart, Criminal Lawyer and Partner

Chuck Lanehart has long been known in Texas as a winning trial lawyer. He is board certified in the field of Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and concentrates his practice primarily in criminal trial work in state and federal courts throughout Texas. He has earned a well-deserved reputation as a lawyer who gets things done.

Sometimes, if the client is worthy and the cause is just, Chuck will work on a case pro-bono. He has helped hundreds of college-age kids who’ve had minor run-ins with the law, and he has been involved in multiple complicated white-collar criminal trials in federal court. He has handled more than 200 murder/homicide cases.

Two cases illustrate Chuck’s vast experience and willingness to help clients of all walks of life in small cases and large cases. He once defended a client who was accused of illegal possession of a protected species of turtles. It was just a Class C misdemeanor punishable by a maximum $500 fine, but Chuck demanded a jury trial. After a full day of trial, the client was acquitted. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Chuck represented a young man wrongfully accused of capital murder. The client’s co-defendant had already been convicted and sentenced to death. The case involved years of litigation, and in the end, the young man was acquitted. Chuck is one of a select few lawyers who have obtained a verdict of “not guilty” in a capital murder trial.

In recent years, he has devoted much of his time defending young college-age students accused of drug possession, driving while intoxicated and sexual assault crimes, including Title IX university investigations. Chuck has always discounted his fees for college students, his way of “paying it forward.”

Chuck received his undergraduate and legal education at Texas Tech University and was licensed to practice law in 1977.

Chuck was the founding editor of the Lubbock Law Notes, published by the Lubbock Area Bar Association (LABA), and served as President of the Bar. In 2018, Chuck received the James G. Denton Distinguished Lawyer Award, the Bar’s highest honor. He also served as Director of the State Bar of Texas and served as a member of the State Bar’s Grievance Committee.

He served as director of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (TCDLA). TCDLA awarded him the President’s Commendation for “Outstanding Service to the Citizen Accused,” and TCDLA honored him with the President’s Award for his service to the Association’s Strike Force.

He is a founding member and former president of the Lubbock Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (LCDLA). He enjoys mentoring younger attorneys and is often called upon as a lecturer on a variety of subjects at legal seminars. Chuck has served as course director for LCDLA’s Prairie Dog Lawyers Advanced Criminal Law Seminar and Nuts & Bolts Course for many years.

Chuck is also active in civic activities. He is past-president of the Lubbock Business Association, has served on the Board of Directors of LakeRidge Country Club, and is a former member of the City of Lubbock’s Zoning Board of Adjustment. He coached Lubbock Girls Basketball teams for many years. He is also a former member of the Lubbock County Historical Commission. He writes a regular history column in the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal’s “Caprock Chronicles.” In 2021, his well-received book, “Tragedy and Triumph on the Texas Plains,” was published by The History Press.

In 2008, Chuck was named among the City of Lubbock’s “200 Most Influential People” by the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal.

When you have need for the best advocate in a serious criminal case, you should contact Chuck Lanehart.


Real Clients, Real Results

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Acquittal on Arson, Sentence Reduced for Aggravated Assault

I don’t know if you remember me, but we all—my family and I—will forever remember you. My husband had gotten into trouble and we lived in a small town in the Hill Country. You took his case and you would fly from Lubbock for court.
It’s been a long time ago. My baby boy was three, and now he would have been 32, but he went to live in heaven at the age of 20. My older daughter was eight. She attended Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio and graduated with a master’s degree. She works with a major corporate office. My younger daughter was five. Now, after graduating from the same university, she is a teacher.
My husband, who is now a disabled veteran, has mellowed and became a great dad and grandfather.
I am telling you this because, as we all remember, you helped Ralph. You gave us our home back. You treated us with respect and dignity. We are forever grateful to you.
God bless you always and thank you again.

Wife of Client, Accused of Burning Down Jail and Assaulting a Police Officer

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Hi Chuck. Many years ago you helped my daughter, when she was student teaching. She was (wrongfully) accused of grabbing and hurting a child, if you remember. Today, she is a teacher in Coppell, TX and recently received full funding for a reading program. She has three kids and a great husband. Just wanted to let you know and say thank you!

Mother of Client, Accused of Assault of a Child

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I want to thank Chuck Lanehart and the rest of the LCDLA and TCDLA Strike Force. Never did I think I would be subpoenaed to testify against one of my former clients. And it did not seem real until (my defense team) looked at me and said, "we are wasting our time if you are not willing to go to jail" But at no time did I think I was in this battle alone. It was humbling to have such a wonderful cast of characters come to my defense. Again I want to give my sincerest thanks for everyone who supported and defended me during this process

Attorney at a Law Firm in Lubbock

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Thank you so very much for everything you have done for me. I cannot thank you enough. Finally have my life back and my future and I appreciate everything you did to give that back to me.
Thank you so much!!

Chappell Lanehart and Stangl logo

Thank you so much for your help in the Gomez case. I really appreciate your willingness to stand up as an expert in criminal defense.
Apart from that, thank you in general for your support and guidance. What a treasure to have someone so learned and yet, so approachable.
I'm sure I've only scratched the surface of your knowledge, and yet I've learned so much. Your kindness and willingness to help, may be slight to you, yet they meant the world to me. I look forward to learning all that you are willing to teach.

An Attorney

Chappell Lanehart and Stangl logo

It is great to hear from an amazing group of people. I would prefer to remain anonymous, but want to give y'all a pat on the back and a huge thank you. I could not have had better legal representation for the DWI charge. While that is a situation I never saw myself in, Chuck Lanehart did a great job making sure I understood the process and represented me well. I also have to give a big shout out to you as well, Bernadette. At the time that I was going through my legal process I was very sad and felt ashamed and it made it easier to come into the law offices and see a bright shining face. 
Chuck really helped me out and it was great to work with the team. I would recommend Chappell, Lanehart & Stangl to anyone facing legal trouble.
Thank you!

Chappell Lanehart and Stangl logo

Weapons Charge Dismissed and Expunged

Thank you for all of your help during this difficult and stressful matter.

A Lubbock Citizen

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Defendant in Lubbock County

Thank you all for your continued support and dedication to my case. While I wish to keep my name confidential, I would love to express my sincere gratitude and leave an anonymous review. Not only did Chuck immediately call me (even after hours) to take my case, he never stopped being readily available to help me. He answered phone calls and emails with little to no wait time. He was great in keeping constant communication with me and answering any questions I may have had without making me feel overwhelmed or stressed. His knowledge and the way my case was handled privately throughout the years made me confident in knowing I made the right choice. Always making sure to be cautious and to keep my case out of the media, he did the very best he could for me. He is the reason I was able to take a breath in a time where not much made sense to me. I wouldn’t want any other lawyer in my corner and I will always refer him to anyone in need of a great lawyer because he is nothing short of that!

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News About Chuck Lanehart

Client Facing Two Felony Charges Reduced to Misdemeanors

Chuck Lanehart successfully defended a 34-year-old client who had been to prison twice previously. He was facing two felony charges: – Assault of a Public Servant (25-life sentence possible due to prior prison sentences) – Assault domestic violence with prior (25-life sentence possible due to prior prison sentences) – Multiple misdemeanors: DWI, Public Intoxication and…

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Solving Lubbock’s Greatest Murder Mystery

Chuck Lanehart and Alan Burton uncover the background, crime and police investigation into Texas Tech’s most infamous murder. The new book,”Fatal Exam” is available at Lubbock’s Barnes & Noble in the South Plains Mall and via Amazon. On Dec. 4, 1967, university employee – Sarah Alice Morgan was killed by Benjamin Lach, a Texas Tech…

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Felony Drug Case Ends in Dismissal for Chuck Lanehart

Chuck represented a client facing possession of more than 50 grams of cocaine with intent to deliver. There was no defense to the 1st degree felony drug charges, and the client had prior criminal convictions. During plea negotiations, the client decided to accept an eight-year prison term. However, his health declined, and Chuck put together…

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Chuck Lanehart to Speak at Lubbock Book Festival

Chuck Lanehart will be an attending author at the upcoming Lubbock Book Festival, the weekend of November 4-5th. Hosted at the Cotton Court Hotel, Lanehart will be one of several authors participating in the local book signing event. Lanehart’s latest book, Marvels of the Texas Plains was published in October 2022 and is his third book in historical non-fiction. His fourth book, Fatal…

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Asset Forfeiture Successfully Negotiated by Chuck Lanehart

Chuck Lanehart recently received a note from a grateful client who was arrested on serious drug charges and probation violation in a small Texas County. He was facing a serious prison term, but Chuck negotiated a two-year prison sentence. At the time of his arrest, officers seized a large quantity of cash from him. Lanehart…

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Ethical Implications of Using Artificial Intelligence to Represent Criminal Defendants

In the August Edition of Voice for the Defense Online, Chuck Lanehart and Megan Gower cover a recent case that earned a lot of media attention over an attorney's use of ChatGPT in the courtroom. While the attorney has yet to be sanctioned, he was lambasted by the judge and media for referencing non-existent case law…
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Client Indicted for Murder, Accepts Plea Deal for Manslaughter

Chuck Lanehart is back in the news, as a client's favorable plea deal changed an indictment of murder to manslaughter. The criminal defendant was sentenced to 20 years in prison, after pleading guilty to manslaughter in the death of his brother-n-law in 2019. A family argument began while the criminal defendant was driving his sister,…
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Chuck Lanehart Secures Probation for Client Guilty of Manslaughter

Intoxication Manslaughter is a second degree felony in the State of Texas. Typical penalties can range from two to twenty years in prison and a fine up to $10,000. Earlier this week, Chuck Lanehart’s client started serving ten years of probation. She must also serve six months of shock jail time following a drunk driving crash…
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Chuck Lanehart Recognized with Writing Award by The State Bar of Texas

The State Bar of Texas awarded Chuck Lanehart for Best Feature/Human Interest Story. The feature article in question was published in 2021 in Lubbock Law Notes and Lubbock Avalanche Journal.  "The Lawsuit that Won Diversity in Lubbock Leadership: Jones vs. The City of Lubbock" In addition, The Lubbock Area Bar Association has been selected to…
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All Charges Dismissed & Expunged for College Student

Past Client Accepted into Medical School After Charges Were Dismissed Chuck Lanehart received a positive update from a client represented years earlier, who was a young adult at the time. The client was a college student when he was arrested in a small, rural Texas county. The charges included: Assault of a Public Servant, Resisting…

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