Andrews v. State

In Andrews v. State, 652 S.W.2d 370 (Tex. Crim. App. 1983), we attempted to refine this exception to the rule. The Court explained that a word or phrase with a technical legal meaning will not always need to be defined. Id. at 375-76. In that case the defendant complained that the trial court should have defined the term "prurient interest." Ibid. The Court said that it might have been wise for the legislature to include a definition of prurient interest, but we concluded that the statute's failure to include a definition did not "cause a jury charge to be subject to an objection for failure to define that term." Id. at 376. The Court said that the Code Construction Act specifies that "Words and phrases shall be read in context and construed accordingly. Words and phrases that have acquired a technical or particular meaning, whether by legislature or otherwise shall be construed accordingly." Ibid. (quoting Tex. Rev. Civ. Stat. art. 5429b-2, 2.01).