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How can I get in trouble for unintentionally shooting

How can I get...

How can I get in trouble for unintentionally shooting someone with a B.B. gun? I was hanging out with friends, who were all taking turns shooting a B.B. gun off a buddy’s porch. When I fired the gun, it hit a board on the handrail and ricocheted, inadvertently hitting one of the friends in the genitals. A week later, he is now filing charges because of it, claiming assault with a deadly weapon. How can this be possible??

Lawyer's Assistant: Because laws vary from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?

Texas.

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?

No, I have not.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Maybe that of the 6-8 people there, I was the only one sober. All other people were intoxicated, most of them being under the legal age to consume alcohol. If that makes any difference.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call.
Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Answered in 32 minutes by:
3/9/2018
Loren
Loren, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 38,800
Experience: Former administrative hearing officer
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Thank you for using JA. I am Loren, a licensed attorney for over 30 yrs., and I am here to help.
I am a certified expert on JustAnswer since 2009, with nearly 100% in satisfied customer ratings. So, we should be able to work through your problem.
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Have the police taken any action? Do you know if charges have been filed or a warrant issued?
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
charges have been filed, but no warrant issued yet.

Do you know what the exact charges are? Are you being charged with a felony?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I believe it is assault with a deadly weapon, so a felony.

Thank you for the additional information. I am sorry to hear of your dilemma. I realize how frustrating this is for you and I hope to provide you information which is accurate and useful, even though it may not be the news you were hoping to get. I just ask that you not shoot the messenger.

Unfortunately, a BB gun is considered a "deadly weapon" under texas law.

Deadly Weapon applies to felony offenses and is defined in Texas Penal Code Section 1.07 as:

(A) a firearm or anyhing manifestly designed made, or adapted for the purpose of inflicting death or serious bodily injury (i.e. deadly weapon by design); or

(B) anything that in the manner or its use or intended use is capable of causing death or serious bodily injury (i.e. deadly weapon by use”).

Under subsection (B) objects that are generally not considered dangerous by design may become so by the manner in which they are used in the offense. Thomas v. State, 821 S.W.2d 616, 620 (Tex. Crim. App. 1991). The object must be used in a manner capable of causing death or serious bodily injury to fall into the deadly weapon class. McCain v. State, 22 S.W.3d 497, 503 (Tex. Crim. App. 2000). To sustain a deadly weapon finding the evidence must demonstrate: (1) the object meets the definition of a deadly weapon; (2) the deadly weapon was used or exhibited during the transaction on which the felony is based; and (3) other people were put in actual danger.

“Firearm” means any device designed, made, or adapted to expel a projectile through a barrel by using the energy generated by an explosion or burning susbtance or any device readily convertible to that use.

“Serious bodily injury” means bodily injury that creates a substantial risk of death, or that causes death, serious permanent disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.

The following have all been found to be a deadly weapon by manner of use: axe handle, baseball bat, BB gun, belt buckle, board, bottle, club, drugs, dustpan, fire, flashlight, floor, foot, gasoline, class decanter, hammer, hand, HIV-positive person, knife, mixture of sedatives, motor vehicle, nailgun, nunchakus, pillow, rope, scissors, screwdriver, seminal fluid, spear, stick, straight razor, underpants, hot water.

So, if you know charges have been filed, you will want to retain defense counsel as soon as possible. This is a serious charge and do not want to defend yourself. You will need a defense attorney.

Your attorney, at the appropriate time, can arrange for a surrender, to avoid an arrest. They will also be able to arrange for bail as quickly as possible to minimize the wait in jail.

If you need assistance finding local counsel try Martindale Hubble (site rules prohibit us from referring specific attorneys). Many attorneys, themselves, use this site to locate attorneys outside their jurisdiction or expertise:

http://www.martindale.com/Find-Lawyers-and-Law-Firms.aspx

It is a huge worldwide database searchable by location and specialty. The attorneys are peer rated. So, they represent the top of the profession.

Do not make any statements to the police. They are not trying to help you. They are trying to make a case fro the prosecution by getting you to incriminate yourself.

If the police contact you, just refer them to your attorney. Say nothing else.

Did you have further questions? Have I answered your question? Please let me know.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Thank you very much.

You are very welcome.

If you have no further questions, and have not yet done so, please remember to leave a favorable rating (click 5 stars in the rating section on this page). It is the only way that I am credited by JustAnswer for answering your question.

There is no additional charge to you for rating me favorably.

A bonus is not expected, but is always appreciated.

Thank you for using JA.

Loren

Loren
Loren, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 38,800
Experience: Former administrative hearing officer
Verified
Loren and 87 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Do you think it is possible that making a statement showing that there was no intent of injury will prevent a warrant of arrest?
No, there is nothing you could say that would stop the warrant if they believe they have probable cause. Do not speak to the police.
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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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