Is Separate Punishment Adjudication Hearing Mandatory In Texas ?
In Hardeman v. State, 1 S.W.3d 689 (Tex.Crim.App. 1999), the defendant was afforded an opportunity to present punishment evidence during his adjudication hearing.
After adjudicating guilt, but prior to sentencing the defendant, the trial court asked the defendant whether he had anything to say. Id. at 690.
The defendant neither responded nor objected to the lack of a separate punishment hearing. Id.
On appeal, the defendant contended Issa v. State, 826 S.W.2d 159 (Tex.Crim.App. 1992) stood for the proposition that a separate punishment hearing must be conducted following adjudication of guilt. Id.
Disagreeing with appellant's position, the Court explained the holding of Issa to be that a defendant is not guaranteed the absolute right to a separate punishment hearing.
Rather, Issa holds only that a defendant must be given the opportunity to present evidence on the issue of punishment if not able to do so during adjudication. 1 S.W.3d at 690-91.
The appellant in Hardeman was able to offer punishment evidence during his adjudication proceeding.
Thus, he received the protections afforded by Issa, and it was irrelevant that the evidence was not presented during a separate punishment hearing. Id. at 691.