Texas Penal Code

Sec. § 19.03
Capital Murder


A person commits an offense if the person commits murder as defined under Section 19.02 (Murder)(b)(1) and:


the person murders a peace officer or fireman who is acting in the lawful discharge of an official duty and who the person knows is a peace officer or fireman;


the person intentionally commits the murder in the course of committing or attempting to commit kidnapping, burglary, robbery, aggravated sexual assault, arson, obstruction or retaliation, or terroristic threat under Section 22.07 (Terroristic Threat)(a)(1), (3), (4), (5), or (6);


the person commits the murder for remuneration or the promise of remuneration or employs another to commit the murder for remuneration or the promise of remuneration;


the person commits the murder while escaping or attempting to escape from a penal institution;


the person, while incarcerated in a penal institution, murders another:


who is employed in the operation of the penal institution; or


with the intent to establish, maintain, or participate in a combination or in the profits of a combination;


the person:


while incarcerated for an offense under this section or Section 19.02 (Murder), murders another; or


while serving a sentence of life imprisonment or a term of 99 years for an offense under Section 20.04 (Aggravated Kidnapping), 22.021 (Aggravated Sexual Assault), or 29.03 (Aggravated Robbery), murders another;


the person murders more than one person:


during the same criminal transaction; or


during different criminal transactions but the murders are committed pursuant to the same scheme or course of conduct;


the person murders an individual under 10 years of age;


the person murders an individual 10 years of age or older but younger than 15 years of age; or


the person murders another person in retaliation for or on account of the service or status of the other person as a judge or justice of the supreme court, the court of criminal appeals, a court of appeals, a district court, a criminal district court, a constitutional county court, a statutory county court, a justice court, or a municipal court.


An offense under this section is a capital felony.


If the jury or, when authorized by law, the judge does not find beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty of an offense under this section, he may be convicted of murder or of any other lesser included offense.
Added by Acts 1973, 63rd Leg., p. 1123, ch. 426, art. 2, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1974. Amended by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5317, ch. 977, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 1983; Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 44, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 652, Sec. 13, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 715, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 887, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 900, Sec. 1.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1994; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 388, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.
Amended by:
Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 428 (S.B. 1791), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.
Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1209 (S.B. 377), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2011.
Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1214 (S.B. 719), Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2019.

Last accessed
Jun. 7, 2021