Criminal District Attorney - Appeals
Appeals from the County Courts at Law and District Courts are heard in the Texas Courts of Appeals. Appeals from Comal County Courts are heard in the Third Court of Appeals in Austin, Texas. Appeals from the Third Court of Appeals decisions are heard in the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals also located in Austin, Texas.
The defendant files a Notice of Appeal in the County Court at Law or the District Court and the case is then sent to the Third Court of Appeals in Austin. The defendant, now called the Appellant, and the State (as Appellee) file briefs that summarize the case facts, frame the legal issues to be decided, and present persuasive written arguments (supported by constitutional, statutory or prior case decision authority). Either party can request that the case be scheduled before the appellate court judges for oral argument. The appellate court will eventually issue a written opinion (or several opinions, if the justices disagree). Not all appellate opinions are "published" (i.e., printed in official "reporter" services, such as South Western Reporter 3rd). The legal analysis and conclusions in published opinions are given greater precedential authority than "unpublished" opinions.