Justia Texas Supreme Court Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in Juvenile Law
The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the court of appeals reversing the decision of the trial court denying R.R.S.'s motion to withdraw his plea of "true" to allegations that he sexually assaulted his younger brother when he was thirteen years old, holding that a child's legal inability to consent to sex does not render the child legally incapable of committing aggravated sexual assault.Based on R.R.S.'s admissions and plea, the trial court found him delinquent. Before the disposition hearing, R.R.S. unsuccessfully filed a motion to withdraw his plea and requested a new trial. The court of appeals reversed the denial of the motion, ruling that because R.R.S. was not adequately informed when he entered his plea about his potential defense that he could not have committed aggravated sexual assault because he could not legally "consent to sex" the trial court erred in denying the motion. The Supreme Court reversed the court of appeals' decision and reinstated the trial court's judgment, holding that the court of appeals erred in holding that R.R.S.'s lack of knowledge of his inability to consent to sex required the trial court to grant his motion to withdraw his plea and for a new trial. View "State v. R.R.S." on Justia Law

Posted in: Juvenile Law
Juvenile was charged with attempted capital murder, aggravated assault on a public servant, and deadly conduct. The jury adjudicated Juvenile of aggravated assault and deadly conduct, assessing determinate sentences for forty years and ten years, respectively. The court of appeals affirmed the aggravated assault adjudication but reversed on deadly conduct, concluding that the trial court committed reversible error by submitting elements of the offense to the jury disjunctively, allowing for a non-uanimous verdict. The State appealed. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that the trial court's disjunctive jury instruction, given without objection, was not reversible error, as the harm to Juvenile, given the jury's other findings and the evidence, was only theoretical, not actual. View "In re L.D.C." on Justia Law