The (Legal) Case Against TalibMarch 30th, 2011
Joe spent a bunch of time late last night getting up to speed on Texas penal code and chatting off-the-record with a friendly, seasoned Dallas defense attorney. (Truth be told, the guy wasn’t that friendly initially, but Joe warmed him up.)
First, let Joe say he’s written all sorts of law enforcement/cops legal stories in his past life working as a reporter for the Tampa Tribune, so this was hardly Joe’s first foray into the boring ass world of online statutes and legalspeak.
Talib’s assault charge is taken very seriously in Texas. If he goes to court and loses, then it is mandatory jail time. The judge is not allowed to sentence with probation unless instructed by a jury when a “firearm” is part of a second-degree felony assault charge.
Joe was told, per the defense attorney, that type of lenient jury-instruction scenario would be about as likely as Joe enjoying a sponge bath with Rachel Watson tonight. Not going to happen.
Keep in mind that Texas courts view Talib as a pretty good guy. His little misdemeanor battery in Florida was wiped from his record after successfully completing probation and anger management class. Talib’s NFL escapades don’t factor in. He’s essentially 25 years old and a first-time offender.
Joe’s defense attorney contact said Texas courts go easy on guys like Talib, especially when “the victim” in the case is an unsavory character, like the alleged sister-beating thug Talib fired shots at. And, per the defense attorney, prosecuters will take into account that nobody was seriously hurt during the alleged assault.
The defense attorney believes, based on the limited information available — Talib hasn’t been arrested yet on the warrant — that Talib will be offered a deal to accept a lesser felony charge, or a misdemeanor charge, and walk away with between two and 10 years of probation.
If the Bucs decision on Talib isn’t made already, it’ll be interesting to see how the NFL handles Talib assuming the above deal scenario plays out.
If Talib gets a good PR man and successfully paints himself as a guy who lost control protecting his family, don’t be shocked if Roger Goodell only hands out a four-game suspension.