The United States and Texas Constitutions both afford protection against double jeopardy, which means a person cannot be tried more than once for the same crime. There are some exceptions to the rule preventing double jeopardy, such as when a suspect either explicitly or impliedly consents to a mistrial. In Ex Parte Elizabeth Ann Garrels, the Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas recently explained that while consent to a mistrial may be implied, a failure to object does not constitute implied consent. If you are charged with a crime it is important to retain an experienced Texas criminal defense attorney to advise you of your available defenses and prevent you from waiving your rights.
Facts of the Case
In Ex Parte Elizabeth Ann Garrels, the suspect was allegedly charged with driving while intoxicated. A jury was chosen, which placed her in jeopardy for the purposes of double jeopardy. The officer who stopped the suspect testified regarding the circumstances surrounding her arrest. The suspect objected asking the court to preclude the officer from testifying on the grounds he was not disclosed as an expert in a timely manner prior to the trial, as required under the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure. The state conceded the officer was not disclosed in a timely manner but requested a continuance rather than precluding the officer from testifying. The judge declined to preclude the testimony or grant a continuance and declared he would order a mistrial. The state objected, stating manifest necessity must be present for a mistrial, otherwise the state would not be able to try the suspect again due to double jeopardy. The judge ordered a mistrial regardless.