In movies and TV shows, court-appointed defense lawyers and public defenders are often overworked and under-prepared. Fortunately, real life in a Tarrant County courtroom is nothing like what you see on TV, at least in this context. The Sixth Amendment guarantees all defendants the right to. And, for the most part, appointed attorneys are at the top of the class.
In a controversial case, the Fifth Court of Appeals in Dallas upheld Dr. Christopher Duntsch's conviction for "causingwhile using or exhibiting a deadly weapon." The deadly weapons were his hands and a medical implant.
After officers pulled over Brian Morton for speeding, they found lots of sex crimes evidence. Later, after they executed a search warrant, they found even more on his cell phone.
Strictly speaking, Texas criminal defendants do not need to hire lawyers. It's possible, yet extremely foolhardy, to represent yourself. And, the Constitution includes the right to counsel. Furthermore, there are also strict competency standards when it comes to public defenders and court-appointed attorneys. In fact, in many cases, these attorneys are some of the best criminal defense attorneys in Tarrant County.