Texas License Suspension

Texas license suspension

The Texas Department of Public Safety wants to keep the roads as safe as possible. Part of these efforts is to remove “unfit drivers” before someone gets hurt. Unfortunately, if you live in a commuter city like Houston, TX, you need a car. 

There are several reasons the state might suspend someone’s license. For example, someone’s physical or mental health might deteriorate to the point they cannot operate a vehicle safely. However, it is far more common to lose your license due to a moving violation or arrest, such as Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). Then, it’s in the hands of law enforcement and the courts whether they suspend or revoke your license – and for how long. 

How Do I Find Out If My License Is Suspended?

You have a few options here. However, if the police pull you over for drunk driving, the suspension is automatic. There’s still a way to save your driver’s license with an ALR hearing, though. You just need a solid attorney on your side. 

If the TxDPS upholds the suspension, they send a notice through the mail. In the event you don’t receive this notice or want to check on the status of a suspension, you can also check online, over the phone, by email, or in person.

Checking Your Texas License Suspension Online

The DPS in Texas has an online database that allows you to see whether you have an active suspension on your license. To access your file, you need the following information:

  • Date of Birth
  • License or ID Number
  • The last four digits of your Social Security Number

Additionally, it will show the requirements for reinstatement along with any fees. 

By Phone, By Email, Or in Person

The Texas DPS also offers ways to contact the customer service department by phone or email. You can reach the department by calling (512) 424-2000. Alternatively, you can submit an inquiry to the form on this page to contact them by email. 

Finally, you can find a DPS office near you and head over there to inquire in person. However, you should be careful if you have warrants out against you

suspended license after dwi arrest

Texas License Suspension After a Drunk Driving Arrest

If the court convicts you for a DWI, there are two license suspensions to deal with: 

  • Administrative License Revocation – an ALR hearing 
  • The legal penalty that accompanies the conviction

You have to deal with the ALR following your arrest, conviction or no. You have 15 days to save your license after your arrest. Work with an attorney to schedule a hearing and appeal your license revocation. 

Unless you win your appeal, the suspension starts on the 40th day after your arrest. 

How to Fight a Texas License Suspension 

If the police arrest you for drunk driving, you need an attorney to help you save your license. Herman Martinez is a practiced attorney with over two decades of experience helping people save their driver’s licenses. 

Our legal team can fight the criminal suspension of your license. If the suspension is in place, we can help you apply for a restricted license. However, this may require the installation of an interlock device. 

To learn more about your options, call 713.242.1455 today.

The Burden of Proof in Sex Crimes: What to Know

The burden of proof in sex crimes cases is an essential factor in how a lawyer builds their defense. When you face a charge, claim, or allegation for a sexual offense in Texas, it’s common to wonder how the evidence works. If you need concise advice, consult a Houston criminal lawyer for guidance on your specific case. 

For now, our firm is here to offer a general overview that shows that standards courts follow in most Texas cases. 

Burden of Proof in Sex Crimes: “Beyond a Reasonable Doubt”

In a Texas sex crime case, the standard of proof is “beyond a reasonable doubt.” For defendants, this means that the prosecution bears the legal burden of proof. It is on them to establish the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. 

When they do so, they have to show that there is no room within the facts for another explanation. The sole resolution must be that the defendant committed the offense. This level of proof must apply to each element of the offense. 

However, “beyond a reasonable doubt” does not equate to absolute proof. Instead, it is as close to absolute certainty as possible. Generally speaking, this is the highest legal standard. 

As such, this is not solely the burden of proof in sex crimes. In fact, it is the standard of proof across criminal cases throughout the country. It’s part of the “due process” clause in the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution. 

Additionally, when the trial begins, it is essential that the jury starts with a presumption of innocence. Then, prosecutors must establish the evidence to show that there is no reasonable doubt of the defendant’s guilt. 

As such, it falls to the prosecutors, not a sex crime defense attorney, to shoulder the burden of proof. 

Elements of Burden of Proof

When it comes to the burden of proof in sex crimes, the courts have established two aspects of the reasonable doubt standard. 

  • Burden of production means that the prosecution produced enough evidence to establish every element of an offense as fact. 
  • Burden of persuasion requires the prosecution to persuade jurors that they applied the standard to every aspect of the offense. 

Do Other Standards of Proof Apply?

In Texas sex crimes trials, the prosecution cannot prove guilt by any other standard of proof. Typically, these standards apply solely to civil cases. For example, the standard of “a preponderance of evidence” still allows room for doubt. Additionally, “clear and convincing evidence” only shows that something is probably or likely. 

Instead, the burden of proof in sex crimes is for the prosecution to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. 

While other standards leave room for interpretation, this remains the highest legal standard for proof. Generally, it applies to criminal trials specifically because the stakes are so high. In some cases, a defendant might face up to 99 years when found guilty of a sex crime. 

What Is the Statute of Limitations on Texas Sex Crimes?

In addition to the burden of proof in sex crimes cases, prosecutors who hope to charge someone with a crime have to abide by the Texas statute of limitations for the crimes. These statutes set limits as to how much time may pass before it’s no longer possible to charge someone. 

Generally, this varies depending on the severity of the crime. 

In Texas, some crimes have no limit on how much time passes. For example, there is no statute of limitations on the following charges. 

  • Sexual assault of a child 
  • Indecency with a child 
  • Aggravated sexual assault of a child
  • Continuous sexual abuse of a child
  • Sexual assault of an adult (when there is DNA evidence available)

Then, the statute drops to 20 years for the following crimes. 

  • Burglary with the intent to commit a sex crime
  • Aggravated kidnapping with the intent to commit a sex crime 
  • Sexual performance by a child 

From there, the statute lowers to 10 years for the following crimes. 

  • Sexual assault of an adult (with no DNA evidence) 
  • Aggravated sexual assault of an adult

So, what does this all mean? The prosecution has to prove the defendant committed the crime within the period of the statute of limitations. However, as mentioned, some crimes have no limitations at all. 

Note: It’s important to recognize that “rape” is not a legal term in Texas. Instead, it falls under various forms of “sexual assault.”

A Difficult Standard to Prove

When it comes to rape and sexual assault cases, it is often difficult to prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt. Often, the prosecution cites the definition under the Texas Penal Code as part of the problem. It places an emphasis on the use of coercion, violence, or physical force. 

As such, it’s not enough for a potential victim to say “no.” Instead, the burden of proof requires that they show the refusal was overcome by force. 

Defenses Against Sex Crime Allegations

With the high burden of proof in sex crimes cases, there are several defenses that offer potential against sexual assault charges. 

One option is an “affirmative defense.” In this method, the criminal lawyer proves facts through a preponderance of evidence that shows innocence. Still, the prosecution has to prove each element beyond a reasonable doubt. However, if the defense lawyer convinces the jury that the facts of the affirmative defense are true, they may find the client not guilty. 

Do You or a Loved One Need Legal Representation?

If you face allegations of sex crimes in the Greater Houston Area, you need an experienced Houston criminal lawyer to protect your rights and your future. 

Contact our criminal defense law firm for a free, confidential consultation. Our legal team is ready to offer guidance and fight for the best possible outcome in your case.

What Is White Collar Crime?

white collar crime

A white-collar crime is a non-violent type of crime. Often, the motivation is financial. Typically, white-coll criminals have a position of power in a company that commands compensation above the average salary. 

In the 1930s, criminologist Edwin Sutherland coined the term. He used the phrase to describe crimes that people of high social status committed. Prior to this introduction to the concept, people often believed that upper-class individuals weren’t capable of criminal acts. 

Blue Collar or White Collar Crime: What’s the Difference?

Oftentimes the difference between blue-collar and white-collar crime stems from the type of access the person has. For example, blue-collar crimes tend to be more straightforward and direct. This includes robbery, theft, etc. Because they lack access to corporate information, it’s more difficult for them to commit high-level fraud. 

On the other hand, a white-collar criminal tends to have more access to this information and the systems involved. For instance, a loan officer at a bank has access to a broad spectrum of records, information, and systems. 

With this access, they have the potential to commit widespread, complicated schemes. 

Common Types of White Collar Crime

White-collar crime is an umbrella term, As such, it encompasses a broad array of offenses. Let’s look at a few of the more common forms of these crimes. 

Insider Trading

When someone commits insider trading, they act with the benefit of knowledge that is not public. This knowledge gives them an advantage in financial markets. For instance, an investment banker knows about a forthcoming acquisition between two companies: A and B. 

With this knowledge, they buy stock in Company B because they expect it to rise once this knowledge becomes public. This gives them an unfair advantage over other investors. 

Identity Theft and Cyber Crimes

Identity theft and hacking are the top two computer crimes. Across the United States, experts estimate that losses from identity theft totaled almost $2 billion in a single year. With over 73,000 cases, California has the most reported cases of any state in the US. 


As white-collar crime is an umbrella term, so is fraud. It covers a handful of different schemes people use to defraud others of their assets. One common example of fraud is when someone claims to send another person a lot of money. However, that individual first needs to send a smaller amount. 

For instance, they may claim that they have access to an inheritance. However, to gain access, they need $300 to afford some processing fee. When the person sends them money, they never receive what was promised to them. 

Ponzi Scheme

This form of white-collar crime gets its name from Charles Ponzi, the original perpetrator. This scam is an investment scheme in which someone offers investors high returns on a project. As the person finds a new client, they pay off the initial investors. 

This continues until they no longer have the ability to attract the clients they need to pay off older ones. When this happens, the entire scheme collapses. This leaves many of the investors with massive losses. 


Embezzlement covers theft and larceny. It ranges from an employee who steals a few dollars out of a cash register to complex schemes. In more complicated cases, the employee transfers millions of dollars out of company accounts. 

One popular example of this is in the plot of the movie Office Space. A group of employees attempts to set up a program that transfers fractions of cents out of company accounts over time. However, they accidentally set up one massive transfer. 

Money Laundering

As far as white-collar crime goes, money laundering is essential for those who deal in large amounts of cash. Through this act, someone funnels cash through different accounts and eventually into a legitimate business. 

At that point, it intermingles with genuine revenue, making the illegal source harder to identify. 


In order to combat counterfeiting efforts, many currencies are now more detailed and colorful. With modern technology, older forms of currency were easy to duplicate. However, the results remain to be seen as technology continues to advance on both sides. 


When we think of espionage or spying, we often think of James Bond or international spies working to uncover information. Yet, we don’t think of it as a white-collar crime very often. 

However, when it involves corporations, it is definitely a white-collar crime. For instance, an agent of a foreign government or competitive company might seek out information or technology from a company. 

One tactic is to approach an employee at that company. The “spy” offers to pay them a large sum in exchange for a prototype, copy of a document, etc. 

White Collar Crime Classifications

Oftentimes, these crimes fall into two categories. 

Corporate Crimes

Some white-collar criminals act at a corporate level, as a group. For instance, a firm may encourage or simply allow employees to engage in insider trading. As they use private information to gain an advantage, it boosts their profits. 

Money laundering is another common crime conducted at a corporate level. 

Individual Crimes

At the individual level, a person or group acts outside of a corporation. For instance, one person might build out a Ponzi scheme. Alternatively, a group might form to commit cybercrimes collectively. 

Other individual crimes commonly include hacking, counterfeiting, and dozens of fraud schemes.

Legal Review for White Collar Crime

When you face charges for a white-collar crime, it’s essential to gain legal representation. With a criminal defense attorney on your side, you have an advocate to protect your rights and freedom. 

If you or a loved one currently faces white-collar criminal charges, contact the Martinez Law Firm for a free legal consultation. To build a strong defense, you need an experienced attorney. 

Authorities Search for a Man Who Robbed a Bank in Walmart

robbed a bank

A man in Houston robbed a bank inside of a Walmart in Harris County early this morning. According to the FBI, the suspect walked into the store and went up to the teller’s window. He handed the teller a note and demanded finances. He threatened the teller, claiming that he had a gun and was willing to use it.

The teller complied with his wishes, and the suspect walked out of the store with cash in hand. He got into a silver Pontiac Grand Prix and sped from the scene. This is not the only time that a Harris County local has robbed a bank in the area in recent days. Some suspect that the same individual continues to rob banks in the area.

Harris County Sheriffs are now looking into the incident. They are still trying to determine how many suspects were inside the bank for the robbery and how much money they fled with. The getaway vehicle was located in a shopping center and there was cash inside the vehicle. It has been recovered, but police are still looking for the offender.

If you have been accused of robbing a bank, then you are going to want a Houston criminal defense attorney on your side immediately. Bank robbery is a serious crime that can result in life-altering penalties and marks on a person’s record. Texas State Law says that a bank robber can be charged with up to 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

Aggravated robbery is a robbery that occurs when a suspect causes serious bodily injury to another or uses or exhibits a weapon. This means that the robber doesn’t actually have to use the weapon, exhibiting the gun or knife is enough to constitute aggravated robbery. If you have been charged of this crime and want a defense lawyer on your side, don’t hesitate to hire a professional former prosecutor at The Martinez Law Firm. A
Houston criminal defense attorney at this firm will help you to get the assistance that you need today. Contact the firm right away to learn more!


Houston Deputy Indicted for Coercing Woman with Warrants

police officer coerces woman into sexual favors

According to recent reports of police crimes, a Harris County sheriff’s deputy was recently indicted after claims that he was coercing women with warrants into pleasuring him sexually. Reports show that he told one woman that if she performed an act with him, he would not turn her in. He has been charged with the police crimes of sexual assault and official oppression as a result. According to investigators, he came across a woman who had an open warrant, and then offered not to arrest her in exchange for physical interactions.

Whenever police are arrested and indicted, it can be very serious. Those who are supposed to be maintaining the law are often held to the highest standard, and when arrested and charged with police crimes officers are at risk to serious punishments and guaranteed job loss. If you want to learn more about police crimes, or if you are an officer who has been charged with a serious crime, then you need to talk with a Martinez Law Firm criminal defense attorney today.

Sadly, many police officers are falsely accused of crimes like the one described above. Sometimes angry criminals want to avoid penalties, and will claim false arrests or accuse a police officer of gross misconduct. If you have been accused of a police misconduct crime, and are not guilty, then you need to talk with a Houston criminal defense lawyer at the firm today and set the record straight. At The Martinez Law Firm, Attorney Martinez and his team are here to help you out with your criminal charges. The firm is focused on working to help you with your case and doing all that they can to prove your innocence. Don’t hesitate to call the firm right away to learn more and get the information that you need!


Holiday Gatherings and Domestic Violence Crimes

domestic violence charge? herman martinez can help you

For some families, having everyone together under one roof is a joyous celebration. For others, this could be a recipe for disaster. Sometimes, the holidays can remind bitter ex’s of the way things used to be, and can cause a person to become depressed and irrational. Also, some family members may have high expectations for how they want the holidays to play out.

If a holiday does not turn out the way that this individual expected, the added stress and disappointment may send this person over the edge. The National Institute of Justice says that this condition is called familicide. There are certain risk factors which put a person at a high probability to struggle with familicide. For example, if a person has a history of domestic violence, access to a gun, and a prior history of substance abuse this typically puts that individual at a high risk to familicide. Sometimes an uninvited family member can also attend a Thanksgiving celebration unexpectedly, and this can result in altercations that can lead to arrests.

If you are arrested for a domestic violence act this year during the Thanksgiving celebrations, then you are going to want an attorney on your side to represent you. A Houston criminal defense lawyer at The Martinez Law Firm can help you with your case and will represent you in the best light possible. Maybe you were mentally unstable at the time of your action, or you may be innocent. Sometimes bitter relatives will accuse an innocent relative of physical or sexual abuse in order to get even.

If you are accused of any domestic crimes, hire an aggressive Houston criminal defense attorney to come alongside you immediately. You will want someone who can be tactical in helping you with your case and will be able to evidence your innocence.