A police officer may make multiple types of non-warrant arrests in Texas. The general rule in Texas is that a police officer must have a warrant signed by a Judge to take away an individual’s freedom, but there are some exceptions. A police officer in Texas may arrest you without a warrant in the following circumstances:
- If you committed offenses within officer’s view or presence;
- Officer has probable cause to believe that you violated a protective order;
- Officer has probable cause to believe you have committed a felony and that you are about to escape;
- Officer has recovered stolen property and believes that you stole it;
- Officer has probable cause to believe you committed an assault that caused bodily injury and that there is immediate danger of further bodily injury;
- Officer finds you in a suspicious place under circumstances that reasonably show you are guilty of a felony, disorderly conduct, or the like;
- Officer has probable cause to believe you committed an assault resulting in bodily injury to your own family or a household member;
- Officer has probable cause to believe that you have prevented or interfered with another person’s ability to place a telephone call in an emergency; and
- If you make a voluntary statement to an officer that establishes probable cause to believe you have committed a felony.
It is important to familiarize yourself with this list. Number 6 and 9 are especially important. A police officer may arrest you without a warrant if you are in a suspicious place that reasonably shows you are guilty of a felony or disorderly conduct. Under exception 6, wide discretion is given to police officers if you are confronted in strange location at night or in the early morning. Be careful of what you say to the police in certain situations. Under exception 9, any admission from you that establishes probable cause gives a police officer the authority to arrest you by law.
The first step in enforcing your rights is knowing your rights.
Julian Nacol, Attorney
Nacol Law Firm, PC