Criminal Law Attack Sheet for the Texas Bar Exam

Creating a comprehensive study guide or “attack sheet” for the Criminal Law section of the Texas Bar Exam involves summarizing the key topics and principles that are frequently tested. An attack sheet is intended to be a quick reference that helps you recall important information efficiently during the exam. The Texas Bar Exam follows the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) format, but it also includes Texas-specific content, so a good attack sheet must cover both general criminal law principles and Texas-specific nuances.

Here is a simplified outline for a Criminal Law Attack Sheet that you can use as a starting point for further study and expansion:


A. **Sources of Criminal Law**
1. Common Law
2. Statutory Law (Texas Penal Code)

B. **Elements of a Crime**
1. Actus Reus (criminal act)
2. Mens Rea (criminal intent)
a. Specific Intent
b. General Intent
c. Strict Liability
3. Causation
a. Factual Cause
b. Legal (Proximate) Cause

C. **Inchoate Crimes**
1. Attempt
a. Specific intent + substantial step
2. Conspiracy
a. Agreement + intent + overt act (Texas requires an overt act)
3. Solicitation

D. **Parties to a Crime**
1. Principal
2. Accomplice
3. Accessory

E. **Defenses to Criminal Liability**
1. Insanity
2. Intoxication
a. Voluntary
b. Involuntary
3. Infancy
4. Mistake
a. Mistake of Fact
b. Mistake of Law
5. Self-defense
6. Duress
7. Necessity
8. Entrapment


A. **Homicide**
1. Murder
a. Texas distinguishes between capital murder and murder
b. Felony Murder Rule (Texas includes)
2. Manslaughter
a. Voluntary
b. Involuntary
3. Criminally Negligent Homicide (Texas recognizes)

B. **Assault and Battery**
1. Texas combines assault and battery into one offense: assault
2. Aggravated Assault (serious bodily injury or deadly weapon)

C. **Sexual Offenses**
1. Rape
2. Sexual Assault (Texas term for rape)
3. Statutory Rape

D. **Kidnapping and False Imprisonment**
1. Kidnapping (abduction with intent to harm or use as a shield/hostage)
2. Aggravated Kidnapping (includes additional elements such as ransom or use of a deadly weapon)
3. Unlawful Restraint (Texas term for false imprisonment)


A. **Theft/Larceny**
1. Unlawful taking and carrying away
2. Of someone else’s property
3. With intent to permanently deprive

B. **Robbery**
1. Larceny
2. With force or threat of force
3. Aggravated Robbery (causing serious bodily injury or using/deploying a deadly weapon)

C. **Burglary**
1. Unlawful entry
2. Into a building or habitation
3. With intent to commit a felony, theft, or assault

D. **Arson**
1. Malicious
2. Burning of a building or dwelling
3. Texas includes habitation and vehicles


A. **Treason**
1. Waging war against the state
2. Adhering to enemies, giving them aid and comfort

B. **Terrorism**
1. Committing violent acts to intimidate or coerce the government or civilian population

C. **Perjury and Obstruction of Justice**
1. Making false statements under oath
2. Hindering the apprehension, prosecution, or conviction of a criminal


A. **Search and Seizure**
1. Texas Code of Criminal Procedure
2. Fourth Amendment implications

B. **Confessions and Miranda Rights**
1. Texas rules on admissibility of confessions
2. Miranda warnings and waivers

C. **Identification Procedures**
1. Lineups
2. Showups
3. Photographic arrays

D. **Right to Counsel**
1. Texas rules regarding effective assistance of counsel

E. **Jury Charges and Instructions**
1. Texas procedure for jury charges in criminal cases

This attack sheet is intended to be a high-level overview. For actual use in studying for the Texas Bar Exam, you would need to delve into more detailed aspects of each topic, including specific definitions, policy rationales, and how Texas law might differ from general principles. Remember to supplement this guide with case law, Texas statutes, and any recent legal developments.

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