Criminal Defense Areas
What is a Felony? A felony is a crime for which the punishment is usually in excess of one year in prison or on probation and a fine of more than $1000.00. A person may also lose some or all of their civil liberties, such as the right to vote or own a handgun, if they are convicted of this type of crime.
What is a Misdemeanor? A misdemeanor is a crime for which the punishment is usually one year or less in the local jail or on probation and a fine of less than $1000.00. Punishment may also include a variety of other hardships such as community service at a recycling plant or picking up trash along the highway with the jail patrol; mandatory drug and alcohol counseling; waiver of your right to travel or your fourth amendment protections against unreasonable search and seizure; and other types of punishments.
If you have been arrested for a DUI, you have 15 business days from the date of your DUI arrest to properly request an Administrative Law Hearing from the Texas Department of Motor Vehicle Safety. This is a SEPARATE COURT DATE from the court date you may have received on your citations. This legal process can be confusing - don't lose your license. Call Earl Spielman & Associates L.L.C. today so we can help you SAVE YOUR DRIVER'S LICENSE.
Motion to Revoke Probation (MTR)
At Earl Spielman & Associates L.L.C. we have years of experience representing individuals who are accused of probation violations. Our Texas criminal defense attorneys have handled numerous motions to revoke in nearly all of the criminal courts throughout Texas. Our attorneys know the law and can fight to keep you on probation or lessen your sentence.
A copy of the motion to revoke (MTR) must be evaluated to determine if there are any defenses available to fight the MTR. A common defense to the allegation of failing to report to the probation officer is that the state failed to exercise due diligence in apprehending the defendant. It is an affirmative defense to revocation, for an alleged failure to report to a supervision officer as directed, that an officer with the power to arrest under a warrant failed to attempt to contact the defendant. It is also a defense to failure to pay monies owed that the defendant did not have the ability to pay as directed. It is also a defense if the state fails to file the motion to revoke and have a capias issued prior to the expiration of the probation. Many MTR’s are defeated because the State cannot prove their allegations as alleged in the MTR or because it would be too difficult to prove the allegation as alleged.
Occasionally, it is advantageous to negotiate a resolution to the motion to revoke probation. Sometimes the MTR can be reset in order to give the probationer additional time to complete courses or community service hours. Depending on the Court, and the allegations made in the MTR, negotiations between the assistant district attorney, the probation officer and defense counsel can resolve the MTR with no jail time or alternatively a short jail sentence as a sanction, sometimes as short as a weekend.
Earl Spielman & Associates L.L.C. is a nationally recognized law firm, which is located in Houston, Texas. For more than two decades, our aggressive Houston drug offense lawyers have successfully defended clients charged with serious felony and misdemeanor charges, including drug trafficking, drug possession, and possession with intent cases. If you have been charged with a drug offense in the State of Texas, you are facing serious charges and should hire a skilled drug charge attorney from Earl Spielman & Associates L.L.C. immediately. Call today for a free consultation.
- Public Lewdness - occurs when someone commits various sexual acts in a public place or if in a private place you are reckless as to whether someone is present that will be offended or alarmed. Public Lewdness in Texas is a Class A misdemeanor.
- Indecent Exposure - occurs if a person exposes himself with intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person and he is reckless about whether another is present who will be alarmed or offended. Indecent Exposure in Texas is a class B misdemeanor.
- Indecency With a Child - If the indecent exposure is committed with a child younger than 17 years and it is done knowing the child is present the offense is a felony. Upon entering a plea to the offense or being found guilty will require registration as a sex offender. There is a very limited affirmative defense that applies only when the perpetrator and the child are close in age and of the same sex and no force is used. Consent by itself is never a defense. Also includes touching over the clothes a child’s anus, breast or genitals if done for sexual arousal.
- Improper Photography or Visual Recording is a Texas State Jail Felony. A person commits the offense if the person photographs, videotapes or electronically visually records another without the persons consent with intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person. Also if someone knows that a recording has the characteristics described above they commit the offense if they promote the recording.
- Sexual Relationships between educators and students are also criminal and can result in being charged with a second degree felony. The actors that are prohibited from having sexual contact with students are broader than just between students and teachers but include in addition to teachers all employees of the primary and secondary school. Again consent is not a defense.
- Internet Sex Crimes are actively prosecuted by the Assistant Federal Prosecutors and local District Attorney’s office. Law Enforcement Officers from the local police agencies, the Texas Attorney General Office and various Federal Agencies operate undercover on the internet and occasionally converse in a sexually explicit manner or even pretend to be sexually active children. Online Solicitation of a Minor, Criminal Solicitation of a Minor, and Child Pornography are the internet criminal cases most likely pursued by the authorities.
- Sexual Assault is commonly referred to as rape. Sexual Assault also occurs when the sexual organ or anus of a child younger than 17 years is penetrated. Sexual Assault also occurs when the child’s various body parts are contacted by an alleged perpetrators sexual organ. Again, there are various affirmative defenses when the perpetrator and child are near the same age. The child cannot legally consent if the actor is more than three years older than the child. If the victim is an adult the usual issue is consent. Did the victim consent to the sexual contact? There are various people that cannot legally consent and sexual contact with them is criminal. As an example a mental health provider cannot obtain consent from a former patient by exploiting the other person’s emotional dependency.
- Aggravated Sexual Assault is more serious than Sexual Assault. Sexual Assault becomes Aggravated Sexual Assault when additional factors are present. Additional factors can include: causing serious bodily injury; placing a person in fear of death, serious bodily injury or kidnapping; exhibiting a deadly weapon; the victim is younger than 14 years; or the victim is disabled or elderly.
Most Sex charges will require that the defendant register as a sex offender if the defendant is convicted and some will require registration even if placed on deferred and not technically convicted.
White Collar Crimes
White collar crimes are usually deceptive crimes committed by professionals for financial gain. They differ from other crimes in that they do not involve violence or force. White collar crimes are often very complex involving many different legal issues and factual documentation. It is of the utmost importance that you seek the counsel of an experienced Texas white collar crimes attorney to begin building your defense. Some white collar crimes include:
- Accounting fraud
- Breach of fiduciary duty
- Health care and insurance fraud
- Lottery fraud
- Mail fraud
- Medicare fraud
- Money laundering
- Securities and tax fraud
- Wire fraud
If you have been charged with a white collar crime or suspect you are being investigated, contact the Lawyers at Earl Spielman & Associates L.L.C. right away. Early intervention by a Texas white collar crimes attorney can mean the difference between your freedom and incarceration. We will work with authorities on your behalf as early as possible in the process to resolve your charges quickly and effectively, limiting your legal exposure.
Sealing Public Records
The attorneys at Earl Spielman & Associates L.L.C. are constantly being asked about expunging or expunction of adult criminal records. The recent interest in expunging Texas criminal records or sealing records in Texas is because nearly everyone will have their background investigated at some point in their lives. We are experienced Texas Lawyers that have obtained expunction orders for many of our clients. We keep up to date on the law on expunging criminal records and can usually determine whether it is worth pursing on a case by case basis.