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Texas laws are hard on strangulation cases

Domestic violence is a persisting problem in some communities. It puts people at risk of losing their lives. Despite this, many victims don't want to speak out, so it's the responsibility of the community to be educated on injuries and what to look for.

One of the specific kinds of injuries that is illegal in Texas is choking. Choking or impeding breath is just steps away from a murder. This is why it's important to protect yourself against these charges right away.

What exactly is assault by choking or impeding breath?

The Texas Penal Code states that this offense is when a person knowingly, recklessly or intentionally impedes the circulation of blood or normal flow of breathing by covering a person's mouth or nose or by applying pressure to the neck. After an alleged victim makes this claim, the court orders an Emergency Protective Order.

What are the signs of choking or impeding breath the court would look for?

The court may look for blood spots where the blood vessels have broken due to a restraining hold. For example, if you hold someone's neck tightly and they struggle, it would be normal to see bruising around the neck.

Other signs of choking may include a raspy voice, which could signify a broken trachea, dizziness and bloody or red eyes from the blood vessels in the whites of the eyes bursting.

What are the penalties if you're convicted of assault by choking?

You can face up to 10 years in prison in the Texas Department of Correctional Facilities. Additionally, you may have to pay a fine of up to $10,000. Sometimes, both are ordered penalties. Assault by choking is a third-degree felony.

What should you do if you're accused of choking someone?

Talk to your attorney as soon as possible. He or she can help you fight the charges and work to have the case dismissed. Whether the incident did occur or has been taken out of context, you deserve to be protected against unfair bias and harsh penalties.

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