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Can an arrest for domestic violence be made without a warrant?

An individual in Texas who is alleged to have committed a domestic assault may be taken into custody even if an officer does not have a warrant. As long as there is evidence that a crime has been committed or is threatened to be committed, the person may be taken into custody right away. In the event that someone makes a statement to a peace officer, that statement could be used as probable cause to take that person into custody.

In the event that there is an existing protective order, the person may be taken into custody for violating that order. In fact, someone may be taken into custody simply for being suspected of being a threat to another person's safety. Should a peace officer need to verify an allegation that a protective order has been violated, the officer is able to stay on scene until the allegation has been verified.

Peace officers may take people into custody even if it is outside of their jurisdiction. This may occur if an individual commits a crime in front of the officer that is a breach of the peace or is considered a felony. Once an individual is taken into custody, the officer must notify an officer in that jurisdiction as soon as possible.

Those who have been taken into custody and who are facing domestic assault charges should discuss the matter with a criminal defense attorney who may be able to prepare an argument against the charge. For instance, it may be possible to argue that the accused was merely exercising self-defense at the time of the incident or that the allegations were fabricated.

Source: Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, "Title 1. Chapter 14. Arrest without Warrant", accessed on Feb. 2, 2015

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Houston, TX 77008

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