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Montgomery County drunk driving defense lawyer
A headline in the news this week involved a forward with the University of Arizona’s basketball team charged with super extreme DUI.  A DUI or driving under the influence of alcohol in Texas is the penalty for someone under 21 that has an alcohol level of .08 or less.  In other states DUI is just another term for DWI.  Anything over .08 in Texas is a DWI or driving while intoxicated and is the same penalty for anyone caught over the age of 21 that has a suspected blood alcohol content or BAC of .08 or more.  So just what is super extreme DUI?

An “Extreme DUI” is a crime in Arizona when a person’s BAC is a .15 or higher.  In Texas, the same offense changes the standard driving while intoxicated of a .08 which is a Class B misdemeanor into a Class A misdemeanor which carries twice the penalties.  So, the extreme DUI in Texas becomes the Class A misdemeanor.  FYI, a Class B misdemeanor DWI carries a penalty of three days in jail, up to a 180-jail sentence and a fine of up to $2000.  In Texas, a Class A misdemeanor DWI carries a penalty of up to 30 days in jail, a $4000 fine and up to a year in jail. A super extreme DUI is a BAC over .20 which has not been adopted in Texas.

In other drunk driving news, it appears that in addition to a ridiculous crime rate, crazy number of shootings each year, and extremely strict gun control laws (which aren’t working), Chicago can also add super weak DWI laws to their resume’.  Tasha Lynn Schleicher, 41, was arrested on the outskirts of town for multiple charges which included two counts of felony aggravated DWI, two counts of misdemeanor DWI, no insurance, driving while license suspended, and an open container of Crown Royal.  Police found the woman passed out behind the wheel of her vehicle with the engine running at a gas station.  Instead of gasoline, she was trying to fill her car with kerosene.  The woman told police she had eleven children and could not find them.  Of note, all eleven of her children had been taken away by the state of Minnesota all for reasons related to alcohol.  When questioned it was found the woman was dropping off her fifteen-year-old son so that she could go party in Indiana.  While in custody, the woman reported that she was pregnant, bleeding, and having a miscarriage.  All of which turned out to be a total fabrication.  The woman had outstanding warrants from at least three states and had received six prior driving while intoxicated arrests out six other states.  In one of her arrests, Tasha was pulled over and charged with DWI while breastfeeding her child.  Classy.  So, what was the final charge in Chicago?  Two years’ probation.

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Rollover Collision
You’ve probably seen a rollover crash in your lifetime.  They are usually the cause of long backups on the highway because of all the looky-loos.  When a vehicle in a collision tips over, rolls on its side, or lands on its roof, this is what is referred to as a rollover collision.  Rollover collisions can and frequently do have passengers that have been ejected.  The full or partial ejection is usually the result of not wearing a seatbelt or seatbelt failure and can ultimately lead to death of catastrophic injuries.  Statistics say that only one percent of all traffic accidents account for rollover crashes.  Sadly, this one percent results in one third of all auto and truck accident deaths.

So, how does a rollover collision happen?  Typically, a driver loses control while driving and the vehicle begins to slide sideways.  I was driving from Conroe to Dallas last weekend and drove through a rainstorm.  My vehicle hydroplaned and started to slide.  If this doesn’t get your heart racing, I don’t know what does.  Had my vehicle struck a curb, guardrail, or even the earth at the edge of the highway, I could have been the victim of a rollover crash.  Drivers that attempt to turn when speeding are also the reason for rollover crashes.  Rollovers can be even more dangerous when your vehicle strikes another vehicle or slides over into oncoming traffic.  Cars or trucks that are hit by another vehicle can often cause a rollover crash.

Common causes for rollover crashes are:

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Conroe Assault Lawyer
An Australian tourist from Perth was charged last week with simple assault.  The crime occurred at a strip club in Orlando, Florida.  At the time the news story broke, the Australian was being held in jail while awaiting a bail hearing.  The story involves this young man “assaulting” a female employee of the club (stripper) by blowing dirt in the dancer’s face while she was performing a lap dance.  The dancer declined to be interviewed.  Shocking, I know.  However, the club’s assistant manager did decide to opine about this event.  “We generally don’t get a lot of troublemakers at our club,” and he stressed that they had not had a patron assault a dancer in years.  Whew, that’s good to know.  “We don’t know what this Aussie guy’s problem was, but he won’t be welcome back here again.”  Right, I’m sure there is a serious vetting procedure for screening drunks entering a strip club.  I’d like to know who they’re turning away.

In Texas, the offense of assault is defined in the Penal Code as:

(a) A person commits an offense if the person:

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Storm damage attorney
According to a May 2016 National Insurance Crime Bureau report, your beautiful State of Texas won top honors in state hail loss claims from 2013 through 2015 with 394,572 hail claims.  No other state was even close to Texas for storm damage.  Why is this important to you?  Storm damage doesn’t just damage roofs, strong winds and hail also commonly damage windows, siding, fencing, and gutters.   Frequently, the storm damage isn’t readily ascertainable by visual inspection.  That means you or your adjuster could easily miss what could develop into a big problem for you.

In addition, many homeowners don’t recognize the extent of the damage until long after it occurs.  So look again, or better yet contact someone that knows what to look for.  Storm damage often manifests itself in the form of chipped paint, nicks in gutters and fencing, and leaking roofs and windows that occur long after the storm is gone.  Often homeowners don’t realize that the high winds and hail have caused micro-fractures in the paint or metal, which leads to premature aging and discoloration.  It is also not unusual for homeowners to develop leaks, cracks, and discolorations in the walls, ceilings, and windows a year or two after their homes were exposed to a catastrophic storm.  But, by then, it is often too late to make a storm claim.

Don’t let this be you.  If storm damage is not promptly reported, your insurance company may deny your late claim as normal wear and tear or faulty construction materials.  Accordingly, most storm damage is often repaired or replaced at the homeowner’s expense (yes, that means you) and not via a properly presented storm damage claim.  As with most things, you’re busy, and unless there is immediate damage sufficient to otherwise affect the use of your home, you won’t take the time to properly evaluate and assess your storm damage.  You may not need a storm damage attorney at this point, but you do need one of our adjusters to make sure you’re not missing something that will haunt you later.

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DWI Attorney
Elected officials love telling you they’re tough on crime.  Right?  You hear, “there’s too much crime, too many drunk drivers, too many drugs.”  What are they doing about it?  “We’re coming down hard on criminals, we’re hammering the drunk drivers, we’re cleaning up the streets!”  Blah, blah, blah.  That is, until it’s the politician or his or her family that’s being charged with the crime.  Double standard?

Last week a county judge from Rockwall, Texas was charged with DWI.  Of course you know the drill when a politician is asked to give a blood or breath sample: they refuse.  Are you shocked?  Didn’t think so.  In this instance, the county judge was first a city councilman and subsequently, the mayor.  With all that experience in government, the judge knew damn well to refuse those field sobriety, breath, and blood tests.  You should refuse, too.

Wait, elected officials charged with a crime? Doesn’t Montgomery County have several elected officials charged with criminal activity? We sure do. Last week several of the Montgomery County Commissioners and the Montgomery County Judge were all indicted by the Montgomery County District Attorney.  Each was charged with nefarious activities.  Do you know what your local politicians do when accused of a crime?  They shut up and lawyer up.  You should too.

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Car and Truck Accident Lawyer

Want a life of pain?  Then don’t listen.  Many years ago when I was a designated doctor for the Texas Workers’ Compensation Commission, I performed independent medical examinations (IME) in order to determine levels of impairment.  What’s that?  It’s simply determining what lasting injuries a person will likely have for the rest of their life.  Take for instance, losing a finger or hand.  One particular exam was twenty some odd years ago and I don’t remember the patient or the injury, but what I do remember was the insurance adjuster.  This particular adjuster called me and said, “I’ve looked at the MRI and I don’t really think this person is hurt.”  Interesting, I thought.  First, what kind of training has this joker had to make this determination and second, the only thing he cares about is his bottom line, money.  The adjuster was trying to settle this claim for less money, making him look better to the insurance company: hence promotion.

Why the anecdote? Simple.  When you have an injury don’t let anyone dictate your plan of action but you and your doctor.  Auto and truck accidents are no different. You’re busy.  We’re all busy, but you only get one shot at this.  If an injury heals wrong, you’re done.  That injured area will never be the same.  In personal injury cases people tend to think they will just get better.  Don’t do that.  It’s not true.  Consult with your doctor.  If you need a personal injury attorney, and you probably do, speak to him or her about your pain and injury.  Even low speed collisions in a vehicle or truck crash can cause tearing of your tissue that simply will not heal correctly without proper therapy and rehabilitation.

Insurance companies simply do not want to pay for therapy and rehabilitation in auto or truck accidents.  Be proactive.  Make sure you max out your personal injury protection (PIP) on your policy to protect yourself.  Hire an experienced personal injury attorney, preferably an attorney that has a background in the diagnosis and rehabilitation of your injuries.  Remember, the right choice could save you a headache later.  Literally.

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DWI Attorney, Conroe and Huntsville

The Fourth Amendment provides each of us against unreasonable searches and seizures.  Due to the Fourth Amendment, you feel secure in your home or vehicle. Should you?  The State of Texas doesn’t feel the same way.  Until recently, the State could take your blood if you were involved in an accident under suspicion of DWI.  Does it really get more invasive than sticking a needle in your arm and removing your blood from your body?  In fact, it was statutory under the Texas Transportation Code.  In other words, you didn’t have a choice, the government just took your blood.  Fortunately, the United States Supreme Court and later the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals (the highest criminal court in our state) did not agree.  Those Courts found that there should be special “exigent” circumstances in order to get around the warrant requirement when taking your blood in a DWI stop. This means you had some of your Fourth Amendment rights returned to you.  Good, right?  Well, it’s good for now.  Two opinions came down from the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals last week.  In both cases, the State of Texas, your government, argued it wants to take back your rights against unreasonable searches and seizures.  In other words, the State wants the statute under the Texas Transportation Code restored.

Here’s an example for you.  You have a drink (1) with your dinner at Chili’s.  You are driving down the road in the recent storms.  You hydroplane and get in a wreck.  It’s not your fault.  You hit your head.  You’re a little out of it from the bump on your noggin.  Someone else is injured.  Under the old law, you’re taken to the hospital and your blood is drawn.  You have no choice in the matter.  You are then taken to jail and arrested for DWI.  Sounds crazy but it happens every day.  If you are arrested for DWI or DUI in Montgomery, Grimes, Walker, Madison, or Leon Counties think about the above example.  No DWI arrest is simple.  You need an experienced criminal defense attorney.  Call us today.

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Storm damage to Conroe and Montgomery County

Recent storms have caused widespread damage to commercial buildings and homes throughout Texas.  Some of the damage is visible, some of the damage is hidden to the untrained eye.  If your commercial property or home has been hit by the recent storms, you should immediately notify your insurance carrier.  Failing to timely notify your insurance carrier can prejudice your rights to recover compensation for storm damage.  So don’t delay in notifying your insurance carrier.  You should also photograph all apparent storm damage and provide the evidence of the storm damage to your insurance carrier.  You need to mitigate, which means you need to tarp and cover damaged roofs or walls to prevent further damage from wind and rain.  Insurance companies are in the business of collecting premiums and denying claims.  You don’t want to make their job easy for them.  In summary, notify your insurance carrier of storm damage and protect your property from future damage.  Remember, insurance companies frequently deny claims by arguing that the storm damage was caused by ordinary wear and tear or faulty construction.  Don’t be a victim twice.  Demand that your insurance carrier repair and/or replace all storm damaged property.  If that doesn’t work, call an attorney experienced in handling storm damage claims.  At Ron Voyles & Associates we have an attorney on staff with the years of experience that you need to handle your claim and make you whole again.  Call today at 936-524-9800.

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Texas driver's license

Lose your Texas driver’s license due to a suspension?  Reasons include arrests or convictions for DWI (driving while intoxicated), BWI (boating while intoxicated), or even drug and substance offenses such as possession of marijuana.  You may already be eligible to get your license back.  Surprisingly, the number one reason we see for people not receiving their licenses is due to a simple mistake.  The mistake being, the failure to change one’s address.  The failure to change your address not only causes a delay, it can cost you money.  Under the Texas Transportation Code Section 521.054 you can receive up to a $200 fine for failure to change your address within thirty days of moving.  If your license was suspended due an intoxication offense such as DWI or BWI, you can be charged with a Class B misdemeanor which is punishable by up to a $2000 fine and or 180 days in jail.

Don’t let yourself get caught in this license quagmire.  It’s not worth the risk of getting caught without a license or insurance.  The penalties will mount and become steep quickly.  Keep your address up to date and pay your reinstatement fee.  If you need a solution, call us.   Even with a license suspension, we can frequently get you an occupational license. This “occupational license” will allow you to get to work or school without the risk of other penalties.  We provide this service for Montgomery, Walker, Madison, and Leon counties.  Call us today and we’ll get you back on the road.

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DWI defense attorney
Picture this.  You are pulled over and arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI) in Conroe or Huntsville, Texas.  You enter a plea agreement.  The state makes an error by not alleging the year of the offense.  The trial court grants motions to acquit.  You walk free with no DWI on your record.  Real or fantasy?  It happened in Central Texas.  Well, almost.

Dismissal vs. Acquittal

The United States Supreme Court prescribed the definition of “acquittal” as, “a defendant is acquitted only when the ruling of the judge, whatever its label, actually represents as resolution (in the defendant’s favor), correct or not, of some or all of the factual elements of the offense charged.”  Why is this definition relevant?  In a recent decision by the Tenth Court of Appeals of Texas, the trial court in the above listed example in the first paragraph called its opinion in that matter a “verdict of acquittal.”  In reality, this “verdict of acquittal” was nothing more than a dismissal in disguise.  The reason being no matter what the trial court calls its decision, in a criminal matter anything short of a directed verdict or a not guilty verdict by the court or jury is in reality a dismissal.  Hence, not an acquittal.