GC followed state trend of dipping crime rates in 2020

Jerrie Whiteley
Herald Democrat
A detention officer walks through a hallway at the Grayson County Jail.  The Sherman Independent School District provided the jail with 20 cases of pulled pork during the recent  winter storms.

In 2020, crime stats in most charges across the state of Texas and Grayson County fell. The good news comes with a few caveats though.

Across Texas, family violence and other misdemeanor assault were the only misdemeanor case categories that increased in 2020, according to the 2020 Annual Statistical report for the Texas Judiciary.

The stat report said that aside from capital murder, aggravated assault or attempted murder, family violence, and auto theft were the only felony categories that increased in 2020.

For Grayson County the report shows that in 2020, there were eight capital murder cases pending on Jan. 1, 2020.The Grayson County District Attorney's Office then filed murder charges against eight people in 2020, and there were 11 charges filed in total. 

Grayson County District Attorney Brett Smith explained that one person might be charged with capital murder, murder and homicide all for the same offense.

Grayson County's crime rates followed the state average  in 2020 according to state-wide report.

The report shows 143 cases indicted for aggravated assault or attempted murder during 2020. Three cases of sexual assault of an adult and 21 cases of sexual assault of a child.

This report shows no indictments in 2020 for family violence assault. However, a look back at indictments released for the year shows that there were charges of family related violence indicted. They just weren't charged as family violence assault.  

The indictments released by the DA's office show dozens of cases for charges  that included continuous violence against the family, assault causing bodily injury family violence, assault of a family or household member with previous convictions, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, family violence.

In all, the report shows, 1,081 cases were indicted in Grayson County in 2020. A similar report for 2019 shows that there were 1,302 cases indicted that year.  

The report shows that two capital murder cases were cleared from the court's docket, one by jury trial and one by plea. It also shows that 58 aggravated assault or attempted murder cases were cleared by plea and one by jury trial.

In  2020, there were 533 cases in which the defendant took a plea to resolve the case which counted as a conviction. That number was 739 for 2019. In 2020, there were four cases in which a jury found the defendant guilty and four people were acquitted, two by juries and two by judges. There were 247 cases in which a person was placed on deferred adjudication and 61 cases were dismissed. 

Grayson County Detention Officer Clint Thomas cleans inside the jail in 2019.