The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals (“CCA”) is the court of last resort in Texas for criminal matters. It is comprised of nine judges including a presiding judge. The CCA is the sister court of the Texas Supreme Court, which is the court of last resort for civil and juvenile matters.
Why The Court Of Appeals Is Important
In Texas, criminals cases that are appealed from a trial court typically go to one of fourteen courts of appeals. If a criminal case is appealed from a court of appeals, the CCA, as a court of discretionary review, chooses whether or not to review the decision of the court of appeals. Death penalty cases, however, are appealed directly to the CCA from the trial courts and must be reviewed by the CCA.
The CCA also has original jurisdiction in all post-conviction writs of habeas corpus. These are matters where a convicted defendant is challenging some aspect of his or her conviction outside of the process of a direct appeal. Examples of reasons for such a challenge are: new evidence, witness recantation, ineffective assistance of counsel, among others.
According to the CCA’s website, the CCA typically disposes of more matters each year than any other appellate court in the country.
Decisions made by the CCA become binding precedent that all other Texas courts must follow in criminal matters. The Court, therefore, has a wide-ranging impact on Texas jurisprudence. It is critical that your CCA Judges be constitutional conservatives and originalists – judges that ensure legislation strictly complies with the original meaning of U.S. and Texas constitutions and judges that strictly interpret the laws enacted by our Texas Legislature as intended when enacted. Your CCA judges should never be activists or legislate from the bench regardless of public or political pressure to do so.
Judge Slaughter has a proven track record of being a constitutional conservative and originalist judge that is tough but fair. And she will continue that track record as your Judge on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, Place 8.