If you have witnessed an event that you believe was a crime, you may be unsure of what action to take. You may be fearful in reporting the crime that you will become involved in the investigation or that you will be wrongfully accused.
It is important that you understand how the law works when it comes to reporting a crime. You may face legal consequences if you are aware of certain criminal behavior but fail to report it to law enforcement.
Helping to conceal a crime is a serious offense
Merely failing to report a crime is, in most cases, simply irresponsible. However, if you actively helped to conceal a crime or lied to the police about what you saw, you could face very serious charges. Doing so could mean that you are charged with being an accessory after the fact. The seriousness of this crime generally depends on the magnitude of the act that you tried to conceal.
Mandatory reporting laws
Child abuse is one crime that has mandatory reporting laws in place. In Texas, anyone that has a reason to suspect child abuse has the legal duty to report it to the authorities. Child abuse is a very broad term. Therefore, all people in Texas have a duty to report any concern that they have for the physical or emotional well-being of a child due to abuse that they may be suffering.
If you are worried about facing consequences due to failing to report or concealing a crime in Texas, it is important that you fully understand the law.