Aggravated Kidnapping Defense Attorney
If you have been arrested or accused of aggravated kidnapping, then you face one of the more serious criminal offenses in the state of Texas. It is an offense that often leads to harsh prison sentences. If you face this serious accusation, then you need an aggressive and experienced criminal defense attorney. Defense attorney Waren Price at The Price Firm, PLLC, is the attorney you need in your corner.
Understanding The Law Of Aggravated Kidnapping In Texas
What is aggravated kidnapping in Texas? The Texas aggravated kidnapping statute is contained in Chapter 20 of the Texas Penal Code. Section 20.04 provides in part that a person commits the offense of aggravated kidnapping if the person:
A. Intentionally or knowingly abducts another person with the intention of:
- Holding the person for ransom
- Using the person as a hostage
- Using the person in furtherance of the commission of a felony or in flight from the attempted commission of a felony
- Inflicting bodily injury on the person
- Abusing the person sexually
- Terrorizing any person
- Interfering with the performance of any governmental function
B. intentionally or knowingly abducts another person and uses or exhibits a deadly weapon during the commission of the offense.
The term “abduct” means to restrain the person with the intent that they not get away either: (1) by holding the person in a place where they aren’t likely to be found or (2) by the use or threat of deadly force.
Defenses To Aggravated Kidnapping
The following are some common defenses or mitigating factors to the offense of aggravated kidnapping in Texas:
- The event was consensual.
- No deadly weapon was used.
- No evidence of a threat of violence.
- No abduction occurred.
- The suspect was misidentified by a faulty lineup process.
- The allegedly abducted person was released to a safe place.
At the trial of the alleged offense, an accused may raise the issue of the abducted person having been voluntarily released by the accused at a safe place. The burden of proof for this is on the accused. It is not a defense to the commission of the crime, but it can be a mitigating factor. If the accused proves that this safe release occurred, then the offense should be punished as a lesser second-degree felony rather than a first degree. This can make a huge difference in a final sentence when the person is otherwise facing the potential of life in prison.
Penalties For Aggravated Kidnapping
Aggravated kidnapping is a first-degree felony in Texas. This means that it carries the potential for a sentence of 99 years or life in a Texas prison. If you have been charged with aggravated kidnapping in Texas, you will need a criminal defense attorney experienced in handling serious and violent offenses. You will need a defense lawyer who has been there before. Waren Price is a criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor with more than 20 years of experience handling serious violent felony offenses, including aggravated kidnapping.
Range Of Punishment For Kidnapping Offenses
The following chart sets out the ranges of punishment for aggravated kidnapping, kidnapping and aggravated kidnapping with the safe release of the abducted person:
- Aggravated kidnapping: First-degree felony (5-99 years or life in prison)
- Kidnapping: Second-degree felony (2-20 years in prison)
- Kidnapping with safe release: Second-degree felony (2-20 years in prison)
Each of these offenses carries the additional potential penalty of up to a $10,000 fine.
Hire A Serious Criminal Defense Attorney
If you face a charge of kidnapping or aggravated kidnapping, then you face the possibility of a lengthy prison sentence. It is critical that you hire the right attorney. Criminal defense lawyer Waren Price at The Price Firm, PLLC, has the knowledge and experience to give you the best chance of winning your case.