“Does TEX. CODE CRIM. PROC. art. 4.07’s grant of ‘original jurisdiction of all misdemeanors’ give county courts jurisdiction—concurrent with district courts—over official misconduct cases?”
Roland moved to dismiss two Class A misdemeanor counts of official oppression, claiming that the county court at law lacked jurisdiction because only district courts have jurisdiction. The trial court denied his motion.
The court of appeals reversed. It recognized that in 1985, Tex. Const. Art. V, Section 8 changed district-court jurisdiction by stating that district courts have exclusive original jurisdiction “except in cases where exclusive, appellate, or original jurisdiction may be conferred by this Constitution or other law on some other court, . . . .” Further, Tex. Code Crim. Proc. art. 4.05 stated: “District courts and criminal district courts shall have original jurisdiction in criminal cases of the grade of felony, of all misdemeanors involving official misconduct[.]” And Tex. Gov’t Code Section 26.045(a) stated “a county court has exclusive original jurisdiction of misdemeanors other than misdemeanors involving official misconduct and cases in which the highest fine that may be imposed is $500 or less.” The court of appeals rejected the Campos v. State’s,783 S.W.2d 7, 8-9 (Tex. App.—Houston [14th] 1989, pet. ref’d), determination that the 1985 constitutional amendment of jurisdiction conferred by “other law” included Tex. Code Crim. Proc. art. 4.07, which conferred jurisdiction to county courts over all misdemeanors and thus should be read to include official misconduct cases. The court reasoned that the text of Article 4.05 and Section 26.045(a) require a different result.
The State asks the Court of Criminal Appeals to review the conflict between the court of appeals’ decision here and Campos. Specifically, the Court should decide whether Article 4.07 authorizes concurrent jurisdiction over official misconduct cases when two other statutes vest jurisdiction of those cases in the district courts.