Sentence Enhancements for Gang Crimes in Plano

Sentence Enhancements for Gang Crimes in Plano

Texas frowns upon gang-related crimes, as is the case in many other states. In an effort to deter gang-related activities, Texas legislatures decided to impose what are called “sentence enhancements” for gang-related crimes.

Under Section 71.02 of the Texas Penal Code, if a person commits a criminal offense while establishing, maintaining, or participating in a criminal street gang, he or she commits the offense engaging in organized criminal activity.

Gang-related crimes under Sec. 71.02, include but are not limited to:

Essentially, when someone commits a gang-related crime, the offense is one category higher than it would be if it was not connected to an organized criminal activity (a gang).

If the offense was normally a Class A misdemeanor, it would be charged as a state jail felony if it was gang-related. If the offense was a third degree felony, it would be a second degree felony if it had to do with a gang, and if the offense was ordinarily a second degree felony, it would be a first degree felony if it was gang-related, and so on.

A person can also get into trouble if they “conspire” to commit a gang-related crime. Under Section 71.02(c), if someone conspires to commit a gang-related crime, it will be prosecuted as the most serious offense that the defendant was conspiring to commit. An attorney from our firm can explain this in further detail.

Other Gang-Related Crimes in Texas

In addition to “engaging in organized criminal activity,” there are other laws that specifically deal with gangs, such as: 1) coercing, inducing, or soliciting membership in a criminal street gang under Sec. 71.022, 2) directing activities of criminal street gangs under Sec. 71.023, and 3) violation of court order enjoining organized criminal activity under Sec. 71.021.

Are you being accused of committing a gang-related crime? Or, are you a parent whose young son or daughter is being charged with a gang-related crime? In either case, you need an aggressive defense.

For criminal defense representation in Plano and Dallas, contact The Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC today!