Hindering the apprehension is covered under the Texas Penal Code in Section 38.05
. I have linked you to the statute.
As you can see when you read it, this is a misdemeanor
, unless the person you are alleged to have harbored from the law has a felony against him. Then, it becomes a felony of the third degree. In Texas, a felony of the third degree carries a penalty of imprisonment any term of not more than 10 years or less than 2 years and a fine of up to $10,000.
For you to be convicted of this charge, you would have to know that the person in your house had felony charges against him.
While it is very typical that a defendant who has been arrested for the first time on a non-violent
felony offense will be extended an offer of probation by the DA, it doesn't have to happen. With a charge such as this one, how generous the state may be may depend on just what the fugitive was wanted for and just how likely the state feels it was that you would have to have known that you were assisting him evade the law.
You should make sure you have a criminal
lawyer so that whichever way this matter goes, you're ready for it. If you don't like the offer and have the defense of lack of knowledge, you may very well have to try this case. If you aren't able to afford private counsel, you can let the judge know that and ask him to appoint you a public defender.
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This thread will not close and you can always use it to get clarification.This is informational only and is NOT legal advice. There is no attorney-client relationship. You are advised to consult an attorney in your state for specific legal advice.
Edited by FranL on 12/14/2009 at 3:22 PM EST