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Family Violence Choking Case Dismissed


The mother of a client with a long history of mental illness problems and anger issues called the police and reported that she wanted the police to intervene and place the client in a mental health respite center. Police investigated further, and the mother told police that the client had choked her during an argument. Rather than taking the client to a respite center, the police simply arrested the client for a felony family violence choking assault charge.

The problem is that there are very few mental health respite beds available anywhere, and in order to get one, the person really has to be in a significant mental health crisis. Client’s family had moved to Texas from another state where it was apparently much easier to place a person in a temporary mental health facility. Here in Texas unfortunately if a person has arguably committed a criminal offense, the mental health respite center becomes the county jail.

With mom’s help, I was able to provide the DA with proof of mental health treatment, proof that the client had moved out and was no longer living with their parents who were the object of much of his anger, and convinced the DA to dismiss the felony assault charges “in the interest of justice.”

Court: 368th District Court