Category Archives: Sex Crimes

  • Harrison County District Attorney Mishandled Child Pornography Evidence in Case, Claims Defense Attorney Mark Lassiter

    District Attorney Coke Solomon

    Dallas criminal defense attorney, Mark T. Lassiter, is representing former Hallsville ISD track coach, Dean McDaniel, in a case involving improper teacher-student relationship accusations. McDaniel was accused of engaging in sexual contact with a 15-year-old student. In planning for the case, Lassiter requested to see all evidence in possession of the prosecution. District Attorney Coke Solomon, mailed Lassiter a disc containing over 80,000 text messages listed as evidence. The messages came from the phone of the prosecution witness, a 17-year-old male high school student.

    Upon reviewing the messages in the course of his case review, Lassiter discovered multiple nude photos of young women, solicited by the witness, one of which is the victim of the charge brought against McDaniel. Appalled by what he was seeing, Lassiter immediately stopped viewing the messages and arranged a time to turn the disk over to the Longview Police Detective, Audrey Wright. As stated by Lassiter, “the Harrison County district attorney is not allowed to distribute child pornography to me by mailing me the disc.” Lassiter blames the District Attorney for mishandling the evidence and not following proper protocol for the kind of evidence that was found.

    As outlined in Texas statute, when evidence contains child pornography, the DA is supposed to keep the evidence locked up, and arrangements have to be made to view it. In this case, the DA, Coke Solomon, did not take the time to review the evidence before mailing it to the defense, disregarding the possibility of sensitive material, and increasing the risk of it being exposed the others. Solomon, potentially unaware of the statutes regarding evidence containing child pornography, incorrectly said that he and Lassiter have the right to view all evidence in criminal cases, which could contain child pornography. In regards to why he did not go through the messages, Solomon stated that he was required to turn the evidence over to the defense “as soon as possible,” according to the Michael Morton Act. When pressed further, Solomon admitted that he did not know the specific time limits in the act.

    On May 23, 2017, Lassiter filed a motion notifying the court of improper evidence and accusing Solomon of improperly distributing child pornography. Longview police currently have possession of the disc. They will review the evidence and determine what should be done moving forward. In a final statement about the shocking images, Lassiter says, “this is child pornography and solicitation of a minor. I have made the DA aware of a crime, and he’s unwilling to do anything about it. The ball is in their court to do what is right.” You can read more about the story here.

  • 19-year-old woman claims KFC manager raped her when she was 16

    A 19-year-old woman, identified only as A.M., filed a complaint in Harris County Court in Texas against fast food restaurant chain Kentucky Fried Chicken, KFC manager Sean McIntosh, and other KFC managers, on Monday, November 28, and an amended version filed Friday, December 2, said that McIntosh raped her “at hotels, at the KFC store, at the trash Dumpster, in cars, and at other off-site locations” when she was just 16 years old.

    In the legal complaint, it was added that McIntosh “made no secret of his sex acts with A.M.”, noting that manager Shawn Baker “in particular was actually told of the predation on A.M. and did nothing to stop it ‘but aided and abetted it’”.

    Our criminal defense lawyers at Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter, who provide legal services for our clients in Dallas or other areas in Texas, handle criminal defense cases involving sexual assault and battery offenses, among others, knowing that such charges can permanently affect your personal and professional lives. Call our offices today at (214) 845-7007.

  • School employee accused of online solicitation of a minor

    Fifty-two-year-old Jeffrey Scott Miller, who was a teacher’s aide at Trinity Meadows Intermediate School in Keller, lost his job on Friday, October 21 after he was arrested for charges of online solicitation of a minor.

    Miller was one of eight people who were arrested on suspicion of being a child predator by agents with the Texas Attorney General’s Office’s child exploitation unit and fugitive apprehension unit. Miller admitted that he communicated with who he believed to be a woman, 35, and her daughter, 14, and that he went to Rockwall to perform sexual acts with both the adult and the youth, a press release from the AG’s office showed.

    Online solicitation of a minor is a second-degree felony that carries with it a punishment of two to 20 years in jail. Investigators who pretended to be children were solicited for sex by all eight men during the sting operation.

    Being charged with criminal offenses can lead to serious consequences for the person being charged because a conviction carries hefty penalties such as long imprisonment terms and heavy fines. If you are charged with such an offense in Dallas or another area of Texas, seek the legal representation of our attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter by calling our offices today at (214) 845-7007.

  • Ex-drama teacher in Fort Worth makes guilty plea to child porn charge

    24-year-old Watauga, Texas resident Matthew Anthony Keller is facing a statutory rape penalty of not less than 15 years and not more than 30 years of federal imprisonment, a $50,000 fine, and a lifetime of supervised release. These penalties come after he made a guilty plea to one count of production of child pornography on Wednesday, October 19.

    Keller, who is a former drama teacher at Southwest High School in Fort Worth, has been in prison since he was arrested in July 2016 on a related federal complaint. He is set to be sentenced by United States District Judge Terry Means on March 2, 2017. According to documents filed in reference to the case, the parents of the victim notified a police department in Macomb County, Michigan when they discovered their 15-year-old daughter was having a long-distance relationship with Keller. They were further worried when they found out that Keller had intentions to fly to Michigan from Texas to have sexual encounters with their child.

    When a search warrant was issued to search Keller’s room, police investigators found sexually explicit videos of the minor victim.

    Our attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter are ready to provide defense for our clients who have been charged with criminal offenses in Dallas and other areas in Texas. We use comprehensive, competent, and aggressive legal defense strategies to obtain the most favorable result for the case. Call our offices today at (214) 845-7007 to learn more about your options.

  • Judge in Brock Turner case recuses himself from another sex crime case

    Santa Clara County Judge Aaron Persky, who faced wide criticism for giving a light sentence to 20-year-old Stanford University swimmer and rapist Brock Turner, recused himself from making a major decision in another sex crime case.

    In a statement submitted to the court on Monday, August 22, Persky said: “While on vacation earlier this month, my family and I were exposed to publicity surrounding this case. This publicity has resulted in a personal family situation such that ‘a person aware of the facts might reasonably entertain a doubt that the judge would be able to be impartial.’” According to a report from Mercury News, Stanford Law professor Michele Dauber welcomed the development. Dauber is leading the public outcry for Persky’s recall.

    Our committed team of experienced criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter provide legal services for clients in Dallas and other areas of Texas. We handle cases such as sex crimes charges and juvenile crimes, among others. Call our offices today at (214) 845-7007 to discuss your legal case.

  • Fort Worth sex offender recaptured after escaping from his trial

    Thirty-four-year-old in Fort Worth in Tarrant County, Texas resident and registered sex offender Jayson Neil Sparks has been recaptured and put in jail after taking off from his trial during a break on Friday, August 5.

    A report from the Fort Worth Star Telegram showed that Sparks was sentenced in absentia on Thursday, August 4 to 30 years of imprisonment for continuous sexual abuse. He was said to have broken out of the Tim Curry Criminal Justice Center on Wednesday, August 3.

    Assistant District Attorney Sarah Bruner said Starks was literally trying to run away from the consequences of his actions, noting that “the defendant saw the evidence was stacked against him and ran away farther than face the consequences”.

    A person facing a criminal charge can expect to subjected to a loss of personal and professional opportunities, hefty fines, and jail time. Get in touch with our attorneys at Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter if you have been charged with a criminal offense in Dallas or other areas in Texas by calling our offices today at (214) 845-7007 to discuss your case with us.

  • Former Dallas Cowboys football special teams player C. J. Spillman found guilty of sexual assault

    Thirty-year-old former Dallas Cowboys football special teams player Claude Norman “C. J.” Spillman, Jr. was found guilty of sexual assault by a jury in Tarrant County, Texas in less than two hours on Thursday, June 30. He was sentenced to five years in prison the Friday after the trial.

    According to Jordan, Spillman invited a woman he met in another city to meet with him in Dallas soon after he signed with the Cowboys in September 2014. Spillman and the woman, whose name had not been broadcast publicly, reportedly went to the Gaylord Texan Resorts and Convention Center where Spillman had been temporarily staying.

    A report from the Grapevine Police Department showed that the incident allegedly took place on Sept. 20, 2014, between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m.

    Spillman avoided being interviewed by the press after news of the sexual assault investigation became public.

    If you had been charged with a criminal offense like sexual assault in Dallas, you need to contact our criminal defense attorneys at Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter as soon as you can so that you are ensured that you get the most dedicated of legal representation services in the state. Call our offices today at (214) 845-7007.

  • Man lurking outside children’s dance studio arrested on outstanding warrant

    The Frisco Police Department reported that they had arrested 28-year-old Calvin Joe Rodgers, Jr. after a 911 alerted authorities that Rodgers was seen suspiciously watching people inside a children’s dance studio on Wednesday, Oct. 21.

    Rodgers was wanted on an outstanding warrant after having failed to register as a sex offender following his release from an eight-year prison sentence just last month. He is currently being held at the Collin County Jail without bail. Rodgers is also classified by the Texas sex offender registry as a moderate risk.

    If you are facing criminal charges such as one involving a sex crime, don’t hesitate to seek an experienced legal team to defend your rights. The Dallas lawyers at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter may be able to help you. Call us at (214) 845-7007 to speak with a member of our legal team today.

  • Citizens protest against settlement in child abuse case

    In a letter written to San Angelo community protesters during the “Justice for Annabelle Protest” done at the Tom Green County Courthouse in Texas last Monday, August 31, the victim’s mother, Brittany Lynn Rosser, said, “The officer’s eyes got real big and he tried hard not to look, but he didn’t know what to do…I asked Annabelle what happened and she said, ‘Tom hurt me with his hand.’”

    An estimate of a hundred people attended the protest and raised placards that read “Justice for Annabelle”, “Keep Annabelle in Your Prayers”, “Protect Our Children”, and “Together We Stand for Justice”.

    It had been almost eight months since two-year-old Annabelle Rosser had allegedly been assaulted by Thomas Boden, whose charge of sexual assault of a child and one count of indecency with a child including sexual contact was dropped in exchange for a guilty plea to a charge of serious injury to a child with serious bodily injury, a deal that got him no jail sentence and 10 years deferred adjudication probation on Tuesday, August 25.

    If you have been charged with a criminal offense, you cannot risk leaving your fate or future to chance or in the hands of an incompetent criminal defense attorney. Get in touch with our legal team at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter in Dallas today by calling us at (214) 845-7007.

  • Sexual assault case against Cowboys’ owner dismissed

    The sexual assault lawsuit against the NFL Dallas Cowboys’ owner, president, and general manager Jerry Jones, filed by Jana Weckerly, was dismissed on October 17, the Columbia Daily Tribune reported.

    Weckerly also accused an attorney of Jones of destroying evidence she had of the event – a memory card with photographs – and that she was given money to keep quiet about what happened several years after, all of which Jones vehemently denied. According to Texas District Judge Dale Tillery, even if said allegations were true, the five-year statute of limitations for civil sexual assault cases had already passed.

    The criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter in Dallas know that sexual crimes are often highly sensitive, and we exercise the utmost care when handling the defense of our clients in these cases. If you have been accused of a sex crime in the Dallas area, call our offices at (214) 845-7007 today to learn how we may work to protect your interests against these allegations.

  • Sexual assault case brought against Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones 5 years later

    Twenty-seven-year-old Oklahoma resident Jane Wackerly filed a civil lawsuit against football team Dallas Cowboys’ owner Jerral Wayne “Jerry” Jones, Sr., claiming that Jones sexually assaulted her in a hotel in Dallas in 2009, Think Progress reported on September 10.

    According to the criminal complaint filed by the plaintiff, Jones purposefully assaulted her without her consent. The lawsuit, which seeks at least $1 million in damages, names both Jones and the Dallas Cowboys as defendants. The plaintiff claims that both parties threatened her into secrecy and covered up the incident.

    Jones’ defense alleged that this case is 5 years old, whereas the statute for limitations for cases like this is two years. It is likely Wackerly’s legal representation will find a way to allow the case to stand, however. Jones’ party believes Wackerly is attempting to extort him.

    The attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter understand how cases like this are usually prosecuted and therefore, know best how to defend against them. Each case is unique, and therefore each defense will be built to suit your particular situation. To begin discussing your legal options, call our offices in Dallas at (214) 845-7007 today.

  • Man gets 10 years for five counts of indecency with a child

    Frisco soccer coach Kevin Michael Hilty, 43, pleaded guilty to five charges of indecency with a child on August 18 in the Denton County Court, The Dallas Morning News local section reported.

    Hilty was arrested in June 2013. He was advised that going to trial to fight the charges would likely result in a far greater sentence. Therefore, Hilty accepted the plea agreement, plead guilty to all charges, and was sentenced to ten years in prison. Another stipulation of the agreement was giving up his right to appeal.

    If you are facing serious criminal charges in Dallas, it is of primary importance to immediately seek legal counsel. This could be the difference that allows your charges to be reduced or, in some cases, altogether eliminated. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter work tirelessly for the most favorable result for our clients, and may be able to work for you. Call our offices at (214) 845-7007 today to begin building your defense.