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JD, Criminal Justice Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 1335
Experience:  Over 11 years of practice in litigation including 10 years as a state prosecutor
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What misdemeanors in Texas are considered to be moral turpitude.

Resolved Question:

What misdemeanors in Texas are considered to be moral turpitude. which ones are not
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.

That depends on the context in which you ask this question, however a crime of "moral turpitude" means a crime of dishonesty such as theft related crimes, perjury, false reporting, etc... Some employment applications for governmental positions will actually spell out which crimes they consider of "moral turpitude" and some things just use the general definition of being a crime of dishonesty and decide on a case by case basis.


Assault, DUI, drug offeneses and other various misdemeanors are not considered crimes involving dishonesty and therefore not crimes involving "moral turpitude".


Please reply if I can assist further.



Customer: replied 7 years ago.
If there is no specific crime listed on the aplication then previous stae rulings on crimes without moral turpitude would be used?
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.

Like beauty... it would be in the eye of the beholder. If you don't put the conviction on the application and they discovery it... and they decide it involves dishonesty then they could likely fire you. If the application is sworn or in the form of an affidavit then you could potentially be charged with forgery.


What is the application for and what is the conviction we're talking about?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
The aplication is for a state lottery license. the crime is assault
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.

I'm sure that is a sworn application so you have to be very cautious. Was the assault by a man against a woman (it matters in Texas)?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
NO it was not.
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.
I think you're going to be ok then... give me a few minutes to try to find you a case.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.

In re Thacker, 881 S.W. 2d, 307 (Texas 1994), the Texas Supreme Court held that Aggravated Assault is not per se a crime involving moral turpitude. This issue is decided on a case by case basis and they look at the nature of the assault, the reasons for the assault, etc... Therefore the crime sitting alone is not one of moral turpitude.


There are circumstances surrounding an assault that could render it one of moral turpitude... gratuitous violence and extreme conduct that violates societies notions of decency can rise to that level. You'll have to use your best judgment. If you drop in on your local attorney's office and have them review the actual conviction and the circumstances surrounding it they can probably give you a good second opinion.


I think generally speaking an assault will not rise to the level of involving moral turpitude, but there could be specific actions that do rise to that level.



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