Criminal Defense Lawyer

Felony Criminal Defense Attorneys Serving Killeen

Defending your rights in Harker Heights, Copperas Cove, Waco and throughout Central Texas

We know that being arrested for a crime doesn’t mean you’re guilty. But when the system treats you like a criminal, it can feel like a tough ride. At the Mary Beth Harrell Law Firm, our defense attorneys understand what you’re going through, and when we take your case, we dedicate ourselves to reducing or eliminating your criminal charges. We work to protect your civil rights, your case – and your future.

With more than 30 years of combined experience, our criminal defense attorneys know how to handle the local criminal justice system. We step in at the beginning of the process and we don’t stop fighting for you until the end. Our team of associates, investigators and our wide access to valuable resources give our clients the edge they need when fighting criminal charges.


My Experience with Mary Beth Harrell has been nothing short of comforting and caring. I was made to feel secure and at ease with the knowledge of my case and what my options were. You wont be disappointed.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ [Google Review]

Cases we handle

Call the Mary Beth Harrell Law Firm today to schedule an appointment if you’re facing an arrest, investigation or felony charges, including:

Aggravated Assault

Under the law, assault means performing an intentional or even reckless act that causes, or threatens to cause harm, to another individual. There are a broad range of actions that might be considered assault, which is what makes it a complicated area of law.
Read more.

Domestic Violence

Family and domestic violence is another form of assault that comes with a separate set of charges and penalties. A conviction for assault with domestic violence can result in loss of right to own a firearm, as well as disqualification for military service and other specific careers.
Read more.

Drug Charges

State and federal drug charges can range from simple possession to trafficking. Texas divides controlled substances into penalty groups according to their addiction risk and medicinal value.
Read more.

Murder and Homicide

Make no mistake – murder and homicide are the most serious charges you can face in Texas. Your legal defense is critical and everything you have is at stake. As a former prosecutor, Mary Beth Harrell has the inside knowledge you need to defend your name and your freedom.
Read more.

Pre-trial diversion

Let’s make your first encounter with the criminal justice system your last, with no collateral consequences. First-time non-violent offenders in Texas may be eligible for pre-trial intervention in lieu of prosecution. You must meet certain requirements for this program.
Read more.

Felony DWI & Drunk Driving

Driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least .08% can lead to a drunk driving arrest. We handle Intoxication Manslaughter, Intoxication Assault, and other felony repeat offenses.
Read more.

Help for servicemembers

Your military career is our utmost priority. If you’re arrested for an offense off your military base, the consequences of conviction can have far-reaching effects. We proudly represent all servicemembers with criminal defense matters.
Read more.

Sex crimes

Sex crime allegations and charges can ruin your life, reputation and career. These types of cases require complex and smart defense to ensure your rights are protected every step of the way. Conviction can result in severe criminal penalties.
Read more.


Theft means taking or receiving another person’s property without permission, with the intent of permanently depriving them of that property. Theft includes a broad range of felony offenses.
Read more.

Weapons charges

We vigorously protect your Second Amendment rights. When you’re facing weapons possession charges or assault with a weapon, you need a strong defense. Conviction of weapons charges could lead to loss of your rights to own a firearm.
Read more.

When you’ve been arrested, what you need is information and support – and our attorneys not only have a thorough understanding of the charges against you, but we’re also well-known in the local community. That means we’re familiar with your court, your jurisdiction and local laws. Our lawyers know their stuff and they’re ready to step up to the plate to defend your rights.

Court and jail information for Killeen and Bell County, TX

After an arrest, you or a loved one may need contact information for the local courts. The criminal defense attorneys at Mary Beth Harrell Law Firm can help guide you through this complex system, but in the meantime, we’ve put together important contact information for your convenience.

Remember, we have the experience and resources to help fight the charges against you. If you’re charged with a crime, it’s crucial to hire a tough, smart lawyer as soon as possible – and let us get to work.

What you can expect working with the Mary Beth Harrell Law Firm

When you’ve been accused of a crime, even if you even haven’t been arrested or charged yet, you can’t underestimate your situation or just hope it will go away. A criminal case can have a ripple effect on your future, and that includes when the truth is on your side. Our criminal defense attorneys are committed to protecting your rights and working for the best possible outcome for your case. When we take your case, you can count on our:

  • Comprehensive understanding of the law. The law is sure a lot more complicated than it appears on our favorite television shows. We know the small and complex details that can make the difference between a conviction and an acquittal, and we use them all to your benefit.
  • Dedication to your case. Our attorneys understand that you’re innocent until proven guilty. However, the county and state likely aren’t treating you that way and you shouldn’t go it alone. We dedicate all our resources to your case in an effort to have your charges dropped or lessened.
  • Knowledge of the court system. Our years of experience here and around Texas give us valuable insight and familiarity with local courts, clerks, judges and prosecutors. We’ll help work your case through the system efficiently, thoroughly and properly – keeping you informed every step of the way.
  • Tough negotiation and defense. Negotiating with prosecution is crucial in a criminal case and can even lead to dropped charges. Our lawyers are talented negotiators and work with prosecutors to find the best outcome for your case. When you’ve been charged with a felony, we have the smarts and the experience to fight for you.

How does the criminal process actually work in Central Texas?

Our job as your defense lawyers is to explain your rights, discuss how criminal cases work in Texas, assert your defenses, and be your advocate with the prosecution. Many people in Texas have mistaken beliefs about the criminal process from film, TV, and other sources, including even the daily news.

We know you probably have a lot of questions yourself, whether you’re facing an arrest or not. You can learn more about the process works here:

  1. The Investigation
  2. The Arrest
  3. Discovery and Evidence
  4. Jury Selection
  5. Opening and Closing Statements
  6. Taking the Stand
  7. What Happens After a Trial

Is there a Killeen criminal defense lawyer near me?

Mary Beth Harrell Law Firm is located in Killeen, but we serve Harker Heights, Waco, Copperas Cove, and throughout Central Texas. Rest assured, however, that if you are unable to come to Killeen, we will travel to visit you. We also offer virtual conferences and telephone consultations.

Killeen criminal defense attorneys working for you

Here at the Mary Beth Harrell Law Firm, we fight for your rights, your freedom and everything you hold important. Whether you’re facing criminal charges or are currently under investigation, working with experienced, tough criminal defense lawyers gives you the best chance at a positive outcome. Let us help. Contact us today at 254-680-4655 or by filling out our contact form. We have offices in Killeen and Copperas Cove, and handle in-custody visits for clients who cannot come to us.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the penalties for felony assault?
The state and the federal government categorize crimes in order of severity, with the “punishment fitting the crime,” as they say. From order of least to most severe, following are the levels and penalties for assault in Texas. [Felony Assault]

What defines domestic assault?
Here in Texas, domestic violence is commonly called domestic assault, or assault with family violence. If you’re charged with domestic assault, prosecutors must prove that you intentionally committed or threatened violence. If the victim has suffered serious injury, the charges can be elevated to aggravated domestic assault. [Domestic Violence]

What are the various drug charges in TX?
The Texas Controlled Substances Act determines the severity of drug charges according to several variables – the amount of drugs you have in your possession, the type of drug you have in your possession, its schedule classification and any aggravating circumstances. If it sounds confusing, that’s because it is. Don’t worry; our lawyers can explain any charges against you in detail. [Drug Charges]

Can I expunge a DWI through pre-trial diversion?
Yes, in Texas it’s possible to expunge your DWI charge through a diversion program. However, if you violate any terms of the program, you’ll be kicked out of the program and have to go back to court to face the charges against you. But when you do successfully fulfill the terms of the program, the court will dismiss the charges and our attorneys can file an action for expunction of your DWI. [Felony DWI Defense]

Can an arrest record keep me out of the military?
Yes, it can. Our country has high standards for every branch of the Armed Forces, and this includes high moral character. Many of our clients ask us if they can join the military with a criminal charge or conviction on their records. Unfortunately, a criminal record can prevent you from not only enlisting in the military, but also from re-enlisting. In some cases, however, it may be possible to secure a waiver for certain misdemeanors. [Help for servicemembers]

What are the penalties for sex crimes and offenses?
The charges and penalties for sex crimes here in Killeen and around the state will vary widely, depending on the alleged offense and other circumstances. However, here’s a general overview of the consequences of conviction. [Sex crimes]

What are theft charges in TX?
Under the Texas penal code, theft is defined simply as the “unlawful appropriation of property with the intent to deprive the owner of that property.” This means taking something that doesn’t belong to you, without the owner’s consent, with no intent of returning it. [Theft]

What are common gun and firearm offenses in Texas?
Texas has more than 1.3 million registered gun owners. We are a strong gun rights state, but the law also comes down swiftly on those who violate state statutes. If you have a handgun license, you must be familiar with the rules and regulations on when and where you can carry and transport a firearm. [Weapons charges]