What Is a First Degree Felony in Texas?

According to Sullo and Sullo Attorneys at Law, first-degree felonies are serious crimes in the state of Texas that are second only to capital felonies in terms of severity. Those convicted of first-degree felonies are likely to receive harsh punishments, including expensive fines, lengthy probation periods and considerable amounts of prison time.

Examples of first-degree felonies in Texas include aggravated robbery, aggravated assault of a public servant, aggravated kidnapping and aggravated sexual assault. Further, the law firm of Sullo and Sullo states that burglary of an inhabited building with the intent to commit a felony, arson of a dwelling, causing serious bodily injury to a child, senior or disabled person, escape from custody with serious bodily injury, murder, solicitation of capital murder and trafficking of children under 14 years of age are also first-degree felonies in Texas.

Texas state law grants judges broad latitude with sentencing those convicted of first-degree felonies. Often, the defendant’s criminal history and the circumstances surrounding the crime are taken into consideration. The firm of Sullo and Sullo explains that defendants who are sentenced to 10 years or less in prison are sometimes permitted to serve their sentences on probation or under community supervision. Defendants without prior criminal histories are more likely to avoid jail time.