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Ask Ely Your Own Question
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 102191
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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Yes. My 17 year old daughter received a citation paraphernali

Customer Question

Yes. My 17 year old daughter received a citation for drug paraphernalia n the state of Texas. What do we need to do? Will she have this on her record
JA: OK. The Lawyer will need to help you with this. Have you consulted a lawyer yet?
Customer: No
JA: Please tell me everything you can about this issue so the Lawyer can help you best. Please give me a bit more information, so we can help you best.
Customer: My 17 year old daughter was riding n a car that was pulled over. She was n the back seat and there was a drug paraphanelia item for weed n backseat between her and another girl. So officer wrote both of them a citation. The people n front had small amount of weed on them.
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Lawyer should know?
Customer: No not that I can think of
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Lawyer about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms. I am sorry to hear about this. Please tell me: 1) Is her citation to the juvenile court, or, district/county court, or JP Court? Or, not sure?2) Does she have any other prior criminal matters? This is not an answer, but an information request. I need this information to answer your question. Please reply, so I can answer your question. Thank you in advance.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No prior record and it's at the municipal court
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
Thank you. I am guessing she has not been to court yet, either - correct?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
Thank you. Understand that the frist coming up is called a "setting," and it is one of SEVERAL that she will have. The court will reset her matter several time s(3-5) to allow her attorney to negotiate with the prosecutor (called an assistant district attorney, or ADA) for a "plea deal." Then, either a plea deal is struck, or she goes to trial.Prosecutor's LeverageIf this case gets to trial, the prosecutor is likely to get a conviction.Her LeverageThe prosecutor is normally very backed up. They are handling literally dozens of cases at once. Setting a matter for trial - jury trial, more so - is a serious issue since they have little time to prepare, file the proper motions, and generally make room for the trial to happen. They also do not want to spend time on a relatively minor case, which yours is.NegotiationRecall how I had mentioned negotiation as one of the options. Very often, individuals in her situation are given a "plea deal," if they have little/no criminal record. Individuals in your situation are very likely to be offered two possibilities:1. Deferred Adjudication (which dismisses the charge if she simply are not charged/convicted of anything else in 6 months to a year, but, pay court costs); or2. A plea deal for something else. Since she is a minor, has no criminal record, and this is a relatively MINOR matter, she is very likely to be offered deferred prosecution. This means a few months of random drug tests, a few classes, community hours, and a fine. Provided she completes this, the matter would be dropped and can be sealed. It would be as though it never happened. I hope this helps and clarifies. Please use the SEND or REPLY button to keep chatting, or please RATE when finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating. Kindly rate my answer as one of TOP THREE FACES/STARS and then SUBMIT, as this is how experts get credit for our time. Rating my answer the bottom two faces/stars (or failing to submit the rating) does not give me credit and reflects poorly on me, even if my answer is correct. I work very hard to formulate an informative and honest answer for you; please reciprocate my good faith with a positive rating.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So I should get her an attorney then?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This is just n the municipal courts. Her case.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It's that serious?
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
Yes I would definitely use an attorney. Yes, this is serious. Although a misdemeanor, if found guilty, this can go on her record. To avoid making any mistakes, I would use an attorney. You are likely looking at about $500 to $1,500 depending on the case. Even at municipal level, a misdemeanor can be serious. Please note: If I tell you simply what you wish to hear, this would be unfair to you. I need to be honest with you and sometimes this means providing information that is not optimal. Negative ratings are reserved for experts who are rude or for erroneous information. Please rate me on the quality of my information; do not punish me for my honesty. Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
K thank u.
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
You are very welcome. Good luck, and please don't forget to RATE my answer in one of top three faces and then SUBMIT – it is the only way I get credit for my time with you – or, please use the REPLY or SEND button to keep on chatting – I want you to be satisfied.