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What are Major Felonies?


Are you facing a criminal charge in Texas? If so, it is imperative that you have experienced legal counsel. An attorney is especially important if you are facing a major felony. In Texas, all felony charges carry the possibility of one year in state prison—and a major felony can carry far more serious penalties. At Hoelscher Gebbia Cepeda, PLLC, we defend all felony charges. Here, our San Antonio criminal defense lawyer explains key things you should know about major felonies in Texas.

Four Categories of Felony Offenses in Texas

The Texas Legislative Council (TLC) has published a full list of felony criminal offenses. Notably, there are several hundred different specific felony charges that a person could potentially face in Texas. As noted previously, all felony charges are serious crimes. Prosecutors invest time and resources into pursuing felony cases and a conviction could change your entire life. With that being said, not all felonies are created equal. There are four classifications of felony offenses in Texas:

  • State Jail Felony: State jail felonies in Texas include offenses that are considered more serious than misdemeanors but less severe than third-degree felonies. These felonies can carry up to two years in a state jail facility, along with possible fines up to $10,000. Examples of state jail felonies include lower-level drug offenses and certain theft crimes.
  • Third-Degree Felony: Third-degree felonies in Texas are punishable by 2 to 10 years in a state prison. A conviction may also include fines of up to $10,000. A third-degree felony is a category that encompasses crimes that are more severe than state jail felonies. Some examples include possession of a firearm by a felon, indecent exposure to a child, and third-time DWI offenses.
  • Second-Degree Felony: Even more serious than third-degree felonies, a second-degree felony in Texas carries penalties of two to 20 years in state prison, along with fines up to $10,000. Crimes falling under this category include manslaughter, sexual assault, and aggravated assault causing serious bodily injury. Police and prosecutors in Texas take second-degree felony charges extremely seriously.
  • First-Degree Felony: First-degree felonies are among the most serious offenses in Texas. A conviction for any type of first-degree felony charge is punishable by life in prison or between five years to 99 years in prison. As with other felonies, this conviction can also include fines of up to $10,000. Some examples of first-degree felony offenses in Texas include murder, aggravated kidnapping, and certain drug trafficking involving large quantities. These offenses are considered especially heinous. In some cases, a first-degree felony offense in Texas is a capital crime that carries the possibility of the death penalty.

Contact Our San Antonio Felony Defense Attorney Today

At Hoelscher Gebbia Cepeda, PLLC, our San Antonio felony defense attorney is an aggressive, effective advocate for defendants. If you or your loved one was arrested and charged with a felony offense, please do not hesitate to contact us today for a fully confidential initial appointment. With an office in San Antonio, we defend felony cases in Bexar County and throughout the region.