Law Office of Kimberly N. Shanklin, PLLC.
Serving Denton County Since 2002
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Tampering or Fabricating Physical Evidence

Tampering or Fabricating Physical Evidence

Chapter 37 of the Texas Penal Code defines offenses relating to perjury and other falsification.

“Tampering or Fabricating Physical Evidence”, as per § 37.09 of the Texas Penal Code, occurs when A) a person, knowing that an investigation or official proceeding is pending or in progress:

  • alters, destroys, or conceals any record, document, or thing with intent to impair its verity, legibility, or availability as evidence in the investigation or official proceeding; or

  • makes, presents, or uses any record, document, or thing with knowledge of its falsity and with intent to affect the course or outcome of the investigation or official proceeding.

Or B), a person commits an offense if the person:

1) knowing that an offense has been committed, alters, destroys, or conceals any record, document, or thing with intent to impair its verity, legibility, or availability as evidence in any subsequent investigation of or official proceeding related to the offense; or

2) observes a human corpse under circumstances in which a reasonable person would believe that an offense had been committed, knows or reasonably should know that a law enforcement agency is not aware of the existence of or location of the corpse, and fails to report the existence of and location of the corpse to a law enforcement agency.

An offense under A) & B)1) is a third degree felony, unless the thing is altered, destroyed, or concealed is a human corpse, in which case the offense is a felony of the second degree. An offense under B) 2) is a Class A misdemeanor.

Severity of Crime

Misdemeanor A

  • Confinement in jail for a term not to exceed one year

  • Fine not to exceed $4,000

  • Both such fine and confinement

Third Degree Felony

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 10 years or less than two years

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000

Second Degree FelonY

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 20 years or less than two years

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000