3 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2021
    1. SynopsisBackground: Following his conviction, pursuant to guilty plea, of two counts of driving while intoxicated with a child passenger under 15 years of age, for which he was sentenced to ten years on each count, to run concurrently, applicant filed pro se application for writ of habeas corpus alleging that conviction on both counts violated double jeopardy. Application was forwarded from the 369th District Court, Cherokee County, and the Court of Criminal Appeals, 2020 WL 5650834, concluded that applicant alleged facts that, if true, might entitle him to relief, and remanded for findings of fact and conclusions of law as to whether applicant was sentenced to multiple punishments in violation of the Double Jeopardy Clause. On remand, the District Court agreed with applicant and recommended that the second count be vacated. The Court of Criminal Appeals, 2021 WL 476471, filed and set case to determine the appropriate unit of prosecution for offenses under the statute of conviction.Holding: The Court of Criminal Appeals, Keller, P.J., held that proper unit of prosecution for offense is each act of driving, not each child occupant.
    1. SynopsisBackground: Defendant was charged with murder and tampering with evidence. The 243rd District Court, El Paso County, Luis Aguilar, J., suppressed two of three custodial statements. State appealed. The El Paso Court of Appeals, 2018 WL 4659578 and 2018 WL 4660185, affirmed in part and reversed in part. State petitioned for discretionary review, which was granted.Holding: The Court of Criminal Appeals, Keel, J., held that officers misled defendant into believing that her recorded statement during car ride with officers looking for body would not be used against her.

      TDCAA: If you had read the lower court’s opinion and all the briefs in this case, you would never have expected the majority opinion that came from the court this week. Everyone assumed that Bible applied to this case—it was just a question of whether, under the Bible factors, the second statement was part of a second interview or merely a continuation of the first. But the court holds that Bible is inapplicable when the second statement is not itself “warned and waived.” This turns the Bible analysis on its head: If the interview was a continuation under Bible, then it was warned and waived.

      You can view the majority’s opinion one of two ways, neither of which is explicit in the opinion. First, the majority may be saying that if a statement is involuntary under Art. 38.21, then the Art. 38.22, §3 recording requirements are irrelevant. But the majority never actually holds that the statement was involuntary in light of the trial court’s findings.

      Second, the majority may be implicitly adopting Judge Yeary’s view that the recording requirements in Art. 38.22, §3 apply to each discrete recording—regardless of how many separate statements or interrogations there are. But again, the majority doesn’t actually hold this. Instead, the majority hedges and simply claims to distinguish Bible based on “the unique facts of this case.” In the meantime, prosecutors should probably advise detectives to re-Mirandize whenever they start a new recording. Just in case.

  2. Oct 2021