You have a right to a speedy trial under the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution. The Six Amendment requires trials to commence within a specific time frame after a person is charged with a crime. Under Texas law, with limited exceptions, a criminal defendant is brought to trial within the following time frames:
- 180 days if accused of a felony
- 90 days if charged with a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for more than 180 days
- 60 days if charged with a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment of 180 days or less or punishable by a fine only
A felony is a crime for which the possible punishment includes imprisonment for more than one year. A misdemeanor is a crime where the penalty range is a year or less in jail or only a fine. For a more detailed discussion of Texas punishment ranges, please see my guide to crimes and punishments in Central Texas.
Speedy trial rights are often routinely and unwittingly waived by asking for additional time to prepare your defense. These rights are something that your attorney needs to consider at the beginning of your case to ensure that they are not waived.
Contact me for a free case review if you are charged with a crime in Comal County or other Central Texas counties such as Hays County, Guadalupe County, Travis County, or Bexar County.