Today while at the courthouse a fellow criminal defense attorneyasked for advice. I have absolutely no problem with that. I think its a great idea to ask your peers their opinion on legal issues. But this question was something a client should be asking his attorney and an attorney should know the answer. If an attorney is asking the question they shouldn't be practicing criminal defense law.
The question was whether his client was eligible for probation after having served time in TDC for a felony conviction. The answer is no. Not to say that defendants with previous felony convictions don't sometimes get probation with a judges approval either through a Presentence Investigation or through a plea bargain after prosecutor is convinced based on the facts that probation is warranted.
How can an attorney represent someone accused of a felony and not have a basic understanding of the law? It reminds me of the many calls we get asking whether someone can get their record cleared or expunged after a conviction. I always inquire as to what their attorney advised. Some attorneys actually advise that the conviction can be expunged. Other times the client failed to ask what the consequences were.
It is the responsibility of an attorney to explain the options and consequences of a particular legal matter. If you are charged with a crime and paying an attorney to represent you, you should expect the attorney to explain the process and options so that you can make an informed decision. You don't want to be in a position years down the road with a conviction preventing you from getting a job or apartment. We always encourage our clients to come into our office and sit down and discuss the case. You should expect this of your attorney.
If you need the services of a Houston Criminal Defense Lawyer call Texas Board Certified Attorney Mario Madrid at 713-877-9400