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TITLE 3. JUVENILE JUSTICE CODE
Sec. 51.03. DELINQUENT CONDUCT; CONDUCT INDICATING A NEED FOR SUPERVISION. (a)
Delinquent conduct is:
(1) conduct, other than a traffic offense, that violates a penal law of this state or of the United States
punishable by imprisonment or by confinement in jail;
(2) conduct that violates a lawful order of a court under circumstances that would constitute
contempt of that court in:
(A) a justice or municipal court; or
(B) a county court for conduct punishable only by a fine;
(3) conduct that violates Section 49.04, 49.05, 49.06, 49.07, or 49.08, Penal Code; or
(4) conduct that violates Section 106.041, Alcoholic Beverage Code, relating to driving under the
influence of alcohol by a minor (third or subsequent offense).
(b) Conduct indicating a need for supervision is:
(1) subject to Subsection (f), conduct, other than a traffic offense, that violates:
(A) the penal laws of this state of the grade of misdemeanor that are punishable by fine only; or
(B) the penal ordinances of any political subdivision of this state;
(2) the absence of a child on 10 or more days or parts of days within a six-month period in the same
school year or on three or more days or parts of days within a four-week period from school;
(3) the voluntary absence of a child from the child's home without the consent of the child's parent or
guardian for a substantial length of time or without intent to return;
(4) conduct prohibited by city ordinance or by state law involving the inhalation of the fumes or
vapors of paint and other protective coatings or glue and other adhesives and the volatile chemicals
itemized in Section 485.001, Health and Safety Code;
(5) an act that violates a school district's previously communicated written standards of student
conduct for which the child has been expelled under Section 37.007(c), Education Code; or
(6) conduct that violates a reasonable and lawful order of a court entered under Section 264.305.
(c) Nothing in this title prevents criminal proceedings against a child for perjury.
(d) It is an affirmative defense to an allegation of conduct under Subsection (b)(2) that one or more
of the absences required to be proven under that subsection have been excused by a school official
or by the court or that one or more of the absences were involuntary, but only if there is an insufficient
number of unexcused or voluntary absences remaining to constitute conduct under Subsection (b)(2).
The burden is on the respondent to show by a preponderance of the evidence that the absence has
been or should be excused or that the absence was involuntary. A decision by the court to excuse an
absence for purposes of this subsection does not affect the ability of the school district to determine
whether to excuse the absence for another purpose.
(e) For the purposes of Subsection (b)(3), "child" does not include a person who is married, divorced,
(f) Except as provided by Subsection (g), conduct described under Subsection (b)(1), other than
conduct that violates Section 49.02, Penal Code, prohibiting public intoxication, does not constitute
conduct indicating a need for supervision unless the child has been referred to the juvenile court
under Section 51.08(b).
(g) In a county with a population of less than 100,000, conduct described by Subsection (b)(1)(A) that
violates Section 25.094, Education Code, is conduct indicating a need for supervision.
Sec. 51.031. HABITUAL FELONY CONDUCT
. (a) Habitual felony conduct is conduct violating a
penal law of the grade of felony, other than a state jail felony, if:
(1) the child who engaged in the conduct has at least two previous final adjudications as having
engaged in delinquent conduct violating a penal law of the grade of felony;
(2) the second previous final adjudication is for conduct that occurred after the date the first previous
adjudication became final; and
(3) all appeals relating to the previous adjudications considered under Subdivisions (1) and (2) have
(b) For purposes of this section, an adjudication is final if the child is placed on probation or
committed to the Texas Youth Commission.
(c) An adjudication based on conduct that occurred before January 1, 1996, may not be considered
in a disposition made under this section.