Medlin Law Firm - March 2022

When Can Prior Convictions Be Used in Court? And Will They Hurt My Chances of Winning?

If you have prior arrests or convictions on your record, youmaywonder how that affects your current case.Will it make a jury see you differently or determine your punishment if found guilty? Will it even make a difference? Here’s what you need to know about your criminal record. Having past arrests or convictions will not hurt your chances of winning your current trial. Any evidence of prior convictions will not be valid as evidence in a court of law. Your criminal record does not come into playwhen deciding if you’re guilty of the crime you’re currently accused of. You can’t be tried for being a criminal in general. A jury will also not decide if you’re innocent or guilty based on your criminal record. Theywill only use evidence brought forward during your current court case. Your record could affect the punishment you receive if you’re found guilty. If you have a history of arrests and convictions, you should contact your criminal lawyer about whether or not the case should go to trial. In Texas, if the state wants to use prior arrests and convictions against you, there are some rules they must follow. One, for example if you testify, is Texas Rule of Evidence 609. This means that in order for a prior conviction to be admitted, the alleged crime must be a felony or involve moral turpitude. A crime of moral turpitude means that the crime has to be morally wrong, not just something that’s illegal. For example, a violent offense or theft is categorized as a crime of moral turpitude. But possession of drugs or speeding is not.

Other qualifications under the rule include if the conviction has a probative value that helps prove an issue or fault.

The final qualification under the rule is if the prior conviction is elicited from the witness or established in the public record.

Your history of past arrests and convictions can be used against you only if your record meets these three requirements.

If you have any questions regarding your criminal record and how it can impact your current case, allow your friends at Medlin Law Firm to assist you. We can look at your situation and see if your case should go through a trial.

Easy March Madness Chili

Cheer on your favorite team and chow down in minutes with this easy chili recipe!


• • • •

2 lbs ground beef 2 tbsp chili powder

2 16-oz cans diced tomatoes

1 tbsp Creole seasoning

2 16-oz cans small red beans 2 8-oz cans tomato sauce

1 tsp ground cumin


1. In a deep pot, brown the beef, stirring often. 2. Once beef is cooked, add chili powder, Creole seasoning, and cumin, cooking for 1 minute. 3. Stir in diced tomatoes, beans, and tomato sauce and bring the mixture to a boil. 4. After the mixture boils, reduce the heat to low and let chili simmer for 15 minutes. 5. Serve with toppings of choice, like cheese, sour cream, or chives.

Puzzle Time

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