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False Imprisonment Lawyer in Houston, TX

A Brief Summary of the Following Page

  • Definition: False imprisonment, under Texas law, involves intentionally confining someone without their consent, with the victim aware of the confinement and unaware of any escape means.
  • Varieties: This crime ranges from kidnapping to wrongful detention by store owners or domestic partners. Exemptions exist for lawful restraint of related children under fourteen.
  • Penalties: Charges vary from misdemeanors, with penalties of up to one year in jail and $1,000 fines, to felonies, resulting in up to twenty years and $10,000 fines, based on the case specifics.
  • Defense: Successful defenses may include proving victim consent or, in minor restraint cases, lawful control. Effective legal representation is crucial in challenging false imprisonment allegations.
  • You can reach our firm by calling (713) 357-4190 or by filling out our contact form today.

When you think of false imprisonment, you may think of a kidnapping or a hostage situation. While these are both examples of false imprisonment, the criminal offense can occur within a variety of contexts, including domestic abuse. Essentially, false imprisonment occurs whenever a perpetrator unlawfully confines or restrains a victim without the victim’s consent, the victim is aware of the restraint or confinement, and the victim does not know, or has limited knowledge of, any way to escape. In Texas, false imprisonment can be either a misdemeanor or a felony, and the severity of the charge depends on the circumstances.

If you have been charged with false imprisonment, you should seek legal representation from an experienced criminal defense lawyer. The legal process can be very complex and intimidating to people who are unfamiliar with it. A skilled Houston false imprisonment lawyer will be able to examine the evidence that the prosecution has against you and raise any possible defenses. One possible defense against a false imprisonment charge is that the victim gave the defendant voluntary consent to be confined. Mary E. Conn & Associates has an experienced team of Houston false imprisonment lawyers who want to help you defend yourself against false imprisonment charges. Call us today for help with your case. 

What Is False Imprisonment?

False imprisonment is a criminal offense that can be either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the facts of the case. Section 20.02 of the Texas Penal Code defines false imprisonment, which is also referred to as unlawful restraint. According to the law, false imprisonment contains four essential elements:

  • The perpetrator intentionally confines the victim.
  • The confinement of the victim takes place unlawfully and without the victim’s consent.
  • The victim is aware of the confinement.
  • The victim has limited to no knowledge of any way to escape.

False imprisonment can take many forms. Kidnapping is the most obvious example of false imprisonment. Also, a store owner can commit false imprisonment if they detain a victim for shoplifting solely based on a bias against the victim’s clothing or appearance. Additionally, domestic violence perpetrators may commit false imprisonment against their partners within their own homes. The law carves out certain scenarios and allows an adult to restrain a child under fourteen years old to which the adult is related to lawfully control the child. Such a scenario would not constitute false imprisonment.

Penalties and Defenses for False Imprisonment in Texas

The severity of a false imprisonment charge depends on several factors. For example, using or exhibiting a weapon, using force to confine the victim, and the duration of the victim’s confinement can determine if the false imprisonment charge is a felony or a misdemeanor. The punishment for misdemeanor false imprisonment consists of up to a one-year prison sentence and fines of up to $1,000. On the other hand, the harsher punishment for felony false imprisonment can consist of up to a twenty-year prison sentence and fines of up to $10,000. If you face false imprisonment charges, you need an experienced legal advocate who can protect your rights and fight to reduce the charges against you.

Having excellent legal representation is the best way to defend yourself in a false imprisonment case. A skilled criminal defense attorney may be able to raise effective defenses that will weaken the prosecution’s case against you. For example, you may be able to prove that the victim willingly consented to the confinement; therefore, you cannot be convicted of false imprisonment without all four elements of the crime present. If you are being charged with false imprisonment of a minor, you may be able to raise the affirmative defense that you merely restrained a child who is under fourteen years old and related to you in order to lawfully control the child. This scenario would be an exception to false imprisonment under the law. When defending yourself against false imprisonment charges, you need sound advice and strong legal representation from a highly experienced criminal defense attorney.

Let the False Imprisonment Lawyers With Mary E. Conn & Associates Defend You Against False Imprisonment Charges Today

False imprisonment is a serious criminal offense, and it can be either a felony or a misdemeanor in Texas. The specific facts surrounding the case will determine how severe the charges will be against the perpetrator. A person charged with false imprisonment should seek legal representation from an experienced Houston false imprisonment defense lawyer as soon as possible. The right Houston false imprisonment lawyer may be able to raise effective defenses against the prosecution. A skilled attorney should be able to navigate the complex legal system while advocating for the defendant and protecting the defendant’s rights. Our team of criminal defense lawyers is familiar with false imprisonment cases, and they are passionate about providing criminal defendants with the legal representation they need.

Mary E. Conn & Associates is a criminal defense law firm in Texas, and our skilled attorneys are committed to strong legal advocacy. Our team of Houston false imprisonment lawyers is highly experienced and has represented numerous criminal defendants facing false imprisonment charges. Do not hesitate to request a consultation with a member of our team to discuss your case. You can reach our firm by calling (713) 357-4190 or by filling out our contact form today.

CALL US TODAY 713-357-4190