In 1994, when Darrell Wayne Bivens, Jr. was 16, he was charged with committing an indecent act with a child in Collin County, Texas. He was charged as an adult and after a period of deferred adjudication, was sentenced to two years in prison.
On April 19, 2012, Bivens was arrested in Collin County on a charge of failing to register as a sex offender. He pled guilty on January 10, 2013, and was sentenced to three years in prison.
Not long after, the Collin County District Attorney’s office discovered that because Bivens was under the age of 17 at the time of the original sex offense, his crime was not considered a sexually violent offense and, therefore, his duty to register as a sex offender had expired in 2008. Bivens had been charged with failing to register because he was misclassified as an adult.
On February 13, 2013, about a month after Bivens had pled guilty and had been sentenced, the Collin County District Attorney’s Office went back to court to seek to vacate the guilty plea and dismiss the case. A judge vacated the conviction and the case was sent to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. Bivens was released on bond.
On March 27, 2013, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals agreed with the lower court and vacated the conviction. That same day, the prosecution dismissed the case.
-- Maurice Possley