Defendant was convicted in the Justice of the Peace Court, Potter County, of misdemeanor speeding. On de novo review, the County Court at Law, Potter County, Pamela C. Simon, J., set fine $200.00 and court costs, deferred. State petitioned for writ of mandamus to compel County Court at Law judge to vacate order. The State contended that the act of suspending the imposition of sentence and giving assurances of a dismissal of the complaint exceeded the authority of the county court at law judge because the statutory limits placed on a justice of the peace or municipal court judge by article 45.051(f) of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure (prohibiting the deferral of an adjudication of guilt in a misdemeanor case involving the violation of a state law relating to the control of a motor vehicle by a person holding a commercial driver’s license) apply equally to a county court at law judge through the provisions of article 42.111 of the same code. See TEX.CODE CRIM. PROC. ANN. arts. 42.111, 45.051(f) (West 2006 & West Supp.2015). Because White was not eligible for deferred adjudication pursuant to the provisions of article 42.111, through the application of article 45.051(f)(2)(A), this Court found that Judge Sirmon failed to follow a ministerial duty by granting relief not authorized by law.
Appellants, Dennis Edward Rayner, Even Better Logistics, LLC (EBL), and Michelle Cora Croom, appealed the trial court’s judgment against them for personal injury and exemplary damages arising out of an accident involving a truck carrying an over-height load, colliding with a highway overpass, injuring Appellee, Ronnie Claxton, who was traveling behind the truck on the roadway. Claxton and his wife, Appellee Sandra Claxton, sued for personal injury damages under various theories of direct negligence and vicarious liability against
Rayner, the driver of the truck carrying the over-height load; EBL, Rayner’s employer and the owner of the truck; and Croom, a fifty percent owner and member-manager of EBL. Following a trial, the jury found Rayner, Croom, and EBL each partially responsible for causing the accident and awarded economic damages to Appellees, as well as exemplary damages against each Appellant for gross negligence. Appellants filed a motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict and motion for new trial, alleging legal and factual insufficiency of the evidence to support the jury’s findings of liability against each defendant, to include the findings of gross negligence. Appellants also argued the damages amounts were unsupported by the evidence, and the evidence was unconstitutional. Ultimately, this Court reversed and rendered judgment in favor of Croom on all theories of liability alleged against her and reversed and rendered in favor of EBL on Appellees’ claims for negligent entrustment; negligent maintenance; and negligent hiring, training, and supervising.
The indictment and jury charge alleged Harber caused Danner’s death with criminal negligence by driving a commercial vehicle without a valid driver’s license or a valid commercial driver’s license, failing to apply his brakes in a timely and reasonable manner, or by failing to maintain a single lane of traffic and driving on the improved shoulder. In his taped interview with Turak, Harber stated he had been driving commercial trucks for ten years and had been issued a commercial driver’s license. This Court held that the evidence is sufficient to show carelessness, but does not establish Harber engaged in any criminally culpable risk-creating conduct that posed a substantial and unjustifiable risk of death and that his failure to perceive that risk was a gross deviation from reasonable care under the circumstances. Asa result, this Court concluded that the evidence is legally insufficient to establish criminally negligent homicide, and thus, this Court reversed the trial court’s judgment and rendered a judgment of acquittal.
Appellant, Texas Department of Public Safety (“DPS”), challenged the county court’s order reversing an order of an administrative law judge (“ALJ”) that granted DPS’s petition to suspend the driver’s license of appellee, Adrian Lamar Cuellar, for ninety days. In two issues, DPS contends that the county court erred in reversing the ALJ’s administrative order. On July 7, 2019, Cuellar was arrested for the offense of driving while intoxicated. n the county court, Cuellar argued that the ALJ erred in suspending his driver’s license because Officer Greig’s report, which the ALJ admitted into evidence at administrative hearing, “was not sworn to” by Greig and thus inadmissible;13 “it[ ] [was] a bad stop” of Cuellar by Greig; and because Cuellar was not driving a commercial motor vehicle when he was arrested for the offense of driving while intoxicated, DPS should not have “t[aken] his commercial driver’s license for one year.” Ultimately, this Court reversed the order of the county court and rendered judgment affirming the ALJ’s administrative order.
The jury convicted Andrew Jerry Muniz of two separate counts of manslaughter and assessed his punishment for each offense at confinement for twelve years and a $2,500 fine. The trial court sentenced Appellant accordingly and ordered that the sentences run concurrently. Appellant identified himself as the driver and presented his commercial driver’s license to Trooper Manley. At trial, Appellant contended that he was not the driver of the winch truck. The yard manager for Texas Energy services explained that winch truck drivers were required to have a commercial driver’s license and that the driver usually had a “swamper” ride along to help with general labor and cable hookups. It is against company policy for an employee who does not have a commercial driver’s license to drive the winch truck. Ultimately, this Court overruled Appelant’s first and second issues on appeal and affirmed the judgments of the trial court.
Appellee P.A.H. (“Mother”) sought to terminate the parental rights of her child’s presumed father, J.L.H. (“Father”). Father stated that once he is released, he plans to obtain a commercial driver’s license and had already applied to a driving school and has been accepted. He testified he is taking business classes, a class regarding the commercial driver’s license, as well as an HVAC class. He states he intends to obtain a commercial driver’s license, but his ability to do so is questionable given his criminal past. In conclusion, this Court held that under the clear and convincing standard, the evidence is such that the trial court could reasonably have formed a firm belief or conviction that termination was in J.M.H.’s best interests. As a result, this Court affirmed the trial court’s judgment.
Appellant, Texas Department of Public Safety (the Department), suspended the driver’s license of Appellee, Raul Castro. After an administrative law judge (ALJ) sustained suspension of Appellee’s driver’s license, Appellee challenged the ALJ’s ruling by filing an appeal in the County Court at Law. Finding no reasonable basis in the record for the agency’s action and no substantial evidence to support the ALJ’s order, the County Court at Law reversed the ALJ’s order sustaining the Department’s suspension of Castro’s license. The Department appealed the reversal of the ALJ’s order and argued that the County Court at Law improperly reweighed the evidence. This Court sustained the issue and reversed the order of the County Court at Law.
On remand from the Texas Supreme Court, this cause comes to this Court for consideration of one issue: whether the trial court properly granted appellee Cuahutemoc (“Tim”) Gonzalez’s no-evidence summary judgment motion on the issue of common-law negligent hiring of an independent contractor. The cause arises from a tragic accident on October 5, 2009, involving a truck filled with silage driven by Raymond Ramirez. When a tire in poor condition blew out on that truck, it collided with a vehicle driven by Tammy Jackson and carrying her daughter, Rexee Jo. Ramirez, Tammy, and Rexee Jo were killed in the collision. Citing federal motor carrier safety regulations, Jackson maintains that Gonzalez breached the duty of ordinary care by failing to inspect the tandem truck Ramirez was driving the day of the accident and by failing to ensure that 3R/Garcia’s drivers all had commercial drivers’ licenses. This Court concluded that the trial court did not err in granting Gonzalez’s no-evidence motion for summary judgment on the negligent hiring claim. As a result, this Court affirmed the trial court’s judgment.
A jury found Wesley Perkins guilty of driving while license invalid and assessed punishment at 45 days in jail and a $2,000 fine. Tex. Transp. Code §§ 521.457(a)(2), (f)(2). The trial court suspended the punishment and placed him on community supervision for two years. Perkins raises thirty-one issues on appeal. In January 2013, a police officer stopped Perkins’s wife for speeding on Manchaca Road in Austin. Perkins came to the scene in his Toyota SUV. Perkins was then cited for several offenses, three of which were Class C misdemeanors originally tried in municipal court.1 He was convicted in the county court at law of driving while license invalid. Perkins was not charged with violating code provisions that govern Commercial Driver’s Licenses. See Tex. Transp. Code §§ 522.001–.154. The driver’s license requirement Perkins was convicted of violating is not limited to persons engaging in commerce or transportation of persons or cargo for hire. See id. § 521.457. Ultimately, this Court affirmed the lower court’s judgment.
In this appeal, this Court decides if an “orientation instructor” for a trucking company is a “transportation worker” under the Federal Arbitration Act. Based on the trial court’s finding that an orientation instructor is a transportation worker, the trial court denied OEP Holdings, LLC’s (OEP) motion to compel arbitration. While the job did not require the orientation instructor to have a commercial driver’s license, Akhondi did at that time. Akhondi testified at the hearing on the motion to compel arbitration. He explained that he took each new driver out to their assigned rig and taught them (1) how to use the unique software packages that MVT uses in its trucks, (2) how to use the standard stick shifts in MVT vehicles, and (3) how to perform a pre-trip inspection of the rig. Ultimately, this Court held that OEP’s single point of error is overruled, and the judgment of the trial court is affirmed.
The genesis of this case is a 2018 traffic accident on I-10 in Crockett County, Texas. In the very early morning hours, Ruben Garza was asleep in his parked car on the improved west-bound shoulder of I-10. Adrian Samuel was traveling westbound and is alleged to have fallen asleep, causing his vehicle to drift off the road and strike Garza’s parked car from the rear. Garza died in the accident. The record shows that Samuel held a valid Texas Commercial Driver License at the time of the accident. Possession of a valid, unrestricted driver license is evidence of a driver’s competency absent evidence to the contrary. Ultimately, this Court concluded that JPH and RDL failed to carry their burden to show that Samuel was not in the course and scope of his employment at the time of the accident.
James Henry Gelinas appealed his conviction of driving while intoxicated. A jury found Appellant guilty and the trial court assessed his punishment at a $1,000 fine and 180 days in jail, probated for fifteen months. On June 15, 2011, this Court issued an opinion reversing the trial court’s judgment based on a finding of charge error. Gelinas v. State, No. 08–09–00246–CR, 2011 WL 2420858 (Tex.App.–El Paso June 15, 2011). Finding that the charge error did not result in egregious harm, the Court of Criminal Appeals reversed this Court’s judgment and remanded with instructions to address Appellant’s remaining points of error. Gelinas v. State, 398 S.W.3d 703 (Tex.Crim.App.2013). Appellant testified on his own behalf. He was a truck driver at the time of his arrest for DWI and had a commercial driver’s license. When the trooper asked him if he had at least a six-pack, Appellant simply agreed with him “to get this over with.” Ultimately, this Court affirmed the trial court’s judgment.
This is a suit for wrongful death, survival, and exemplary damages brought pursuant to Civil Practice and Remedies Code Chapters 71 and 41, respectively, by the beneficiaries and family members of Lorenzo Munoz and Roger Franceware. At issue is an August 17, 2010, single commercial motor vehicle accident in Mitchell County, Texas, in which Munoz and Franceware were killed after the tractor-trailer in which they were driving veered off the highway at a slight angle. Munoz obtained his commercial driver’s license and began driving commercial motor vehicles in 2003. At the time of the accident, Munoz had been driving commercial motor vehicles for seven years. He was considered a veteran driver. Having concluded that these parties have established the record reveals legally insufficient evidence as to causation, this Court reversed and rendered judgment that Appellees take nothing against Moore Freight, Strader, and XMEX.
In this personal injury case arising out of an auto accident, a jury awarded over $2.8 million in actual damages to appellee Ray Castillo in his suit against appellants Luis de Jesus Lara Munoz (Lara) and Unimex Logistics, L.L.C. (Unimex). Jose Cavazos, a traffic investigator with the Mission Police Department, testified at trial that Lara’s tractor-trailer generated tire marks which “came to about the center of the inside lane” (Lane 1) of the three-lane frontage road Cavazos identified the “Texas Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers Handbook” as a book that drivers must study to pass their commercial driver’s license (CDL) test. Because there was factually insufficient evidence to support the award of certain future medical expenses, this Court affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded for a new trial, subject to remittitur.
Sarah Gregory and New Prime, Inc. appeal a judgment awarding damages to the Estate of Bhupinder Singh Deol and his wife, children, and parents in connection with Deol’s death following a multi-vehicle collision on Interstate 40 in Texas. In twelve issues, Gregory and New Prime challenge the sufficiency of the evidence to support various jury findings and assert instances of error in the jury charge and in the striking of designated responsible third parties. New Prime hired Gregory approximately three months prior to the accident at issue in this case. After some training, she obtained a commercial driver’s license. She spent several more weeks driving tractor-trailers under the oversight of certified instructors. At the time of the accident, Gregory was classified as a B1 driver, meaning she had to be paired with a certified instructor or an experienced driver. There was evidence adduced at trial that Ellison was only marginally more experienced than Gregory. Ultimately, this Court affirmed the trial court’s judgment.
This case is brought by Plaintiff Jessica Perez, on her own behalf and on behalf of her minor children (“Plaintiff”), for damages arising from a motor vehicle collision.
Defendant was convicted in the municipal court of failing to stop at a clearly marked stop line when facing a red light. Defendant appealed. The County Criminal Court at Law No. 14, Harris County, affirmed. Defendant appealed. The Court of Appeals, 346 S.W.3d 234, reversed and remanded. State petitioned for review. The Court of Criminal Appeals, 369 S.W.3d 872, reversed and remanded. On remand, the Court of Appeals held that:  trial court’s question to defendant did not violate his privilege against self-incrimination;  trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying defendant’s motion for deferred disposition probation; and  trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting testimony of police officers that defendant was not directed by a traffic device to turn left on the red light. Affirmed.
Defendant was convicted in the 337th District Court, Harris County of criminally negligent homicide, and was sentenced to ten years’ imprisonment. Defendant appealed. The Court of Appeals held that evidence was legally insufficient to support finding of requisite culpable mental state to support conviction. Reversed and rendered.
Driver of tractor-trailer, who was injured when tires separated from oncoming tractor-trailer and precipitated wreck involving four tractor-trailer rigs, belonged to the class that Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR), prohibiting operation of vehicles with missing nuts or bolts and requiring a motor carrier to maintain motor vehicles in safe and proper operating conditions and a driver to be satisfied that vehicle was in safe operating condition, were intended to protect, and his injury was of a type that the regulations were designed to prevent, for purposes of determining whether injured driver had a negligence per se claim based on such regulations against owner and driver of oncoming tractor-trailer.
Defendant pled guilty in justice court to driving 72 miles per hour in a 55-mile per-hour zone, and the County Court at Law No. 2, Brazos County, deferred finding of guilt and ordered defendant to complete a driving safety course. State appealed. The Court of Appeals held that:  statute providing, in certain circumstances, for deferred adjudication of guilt authorizes county court to grant deferred adjudication on appeal to a defendant who did not invoke procedures providing for driving safety courses in relation to offense at justice court level and who did not commit a serious traffic violation while driving a commercial motor vehicle, and  county court could grant deferred adjudication and order completion of driving safety course on defendant’s appeal. Affirmed.
Department of Public Safety appealed from order of the County Court at Law No. 1, Hays County, reversing administrative suspension of driver’s license of motorist arrested for driving while intoxicated. The Austin Court of Appeals, 363 S.W.3d 606, affirmed. Department petitioned for review. The Supreme Court granted petition, and held that officer’s failure to swear to arrest report did not deprive it of assurance of veracity or render it inadmissible. Reversed and remanded.
After the Department of Public Safety suspended licensee’s driver’s license, he appealed. An administrative law judge affirmed the suspension. Licensee appealed. The County Court at Law Number Five of El Paso County, reversed. The Department appealed. The Court of Appeals held that police officer had reasonable suspicion to lawfully detain defendant. Reversed and rendered.
Driver did not exhaust mandatory administrative remedies in his attempt to have his driver’s license restored, and trial court therefore did not have subject matter jurisdiction to grant driver a temporary injunction ordering the Department of Public Safety to restore his license. Driver had been arrested for driving while intoxicated, and his driver’s license had been suspended for failure to take a breath test. The case was later dismissed due to insufficient evidence.
Substantial evidence supported an ALJ’s suspension of a driver’s license. A police officer had a reasonable suspicion to stop the driver because he committed a traffic violation and there was sufficient evidence that the defendant was intoxicated at the time of the stop. The defendant smelled of alcohol, admitted to drinking four or five 12-ounce beers earlier that evening, performed poorly on the administered field-sobriety tests, and failed a breath test.
Appellant, the Texas Department of Public Safety, appeals the trial court’s reversal of an administrative law judge’s decision that permitted DPS to suspend appellee’s driver’s license based on his refusal to provide a breath specimen following his arrest for driving while intoxicated. Court of Appeals of Texas, Corpus Christi-Edinburg, reversed the trial court’s judgment and rendered judgment reinstating the administrative order.
Motorist’s speed before being stopped by police officer, his lack of balance and leaning on his vehicle for support, his inability to promptly answer questions posed to him, his refusal to comply with the officer’s requests to perform field sobriety testing or to provide a breath or blood specimen, and his admission of ingesting prescription medication was sufficient grounds to establish probable cause that motorist was driving while intoxicated as a result of the introduction of a drug into his body. Thus, under the implied consent statute, the suspension of motorist’s driving privileges for two years was warranted for his refusal to submit to giving a breath or blood specimen after his arrest for driving while intoxicated.
An ALJ’s decision to uphold a driver’s license suspension was supported by substantial evidence. The evidence indicated that a police officer had probable cause to stop the driver, the driver performed poorly on field sobriety tests and subsequently refused the officer’s request to submit to a breath test.
A trooper’s failure to complete a refusal report after a driver refused to submit to an alcohol concentration test did not invalidate the suspension of the driver’s license. The driver, a minor, was stopped for a traffic violation. During the stop, the officer observed a strong odor of alcohol and conducted three field sobriety tests. The driver performed poorly on the sobriety tests and after being given the statutorily required warning, refused to submit to an alcohol concentration test. Although the trooper failed to complete a refusal report, the completion of the report was not a prerequisite for suspension.
Texas Department of Public Safety appealed from a judgment rendered in favor of appellee on a petition for judicial review of the administrative suspension of his driver’s license. Court of Appeals of Texas, Houston (1st Dist.), affirmed.
Luke Thomas Kaspar was arrested for driving while intoxicated and provided a breath specimen with an alcohol concentration of 0.188 to 0.199, more than twice the legal limit of 0.08. An administrative law judge sustained the Texas Department of Public Safety’s suspension of Kaspar’s driver’s license, based on the arresting officer’s report and the Breath Test Technical Supervisor Affidavit. Kaspar objected to the admission of the report because it was unsworn and to the admission of the test because neither the breath test technical supervisor nor breath test operator was present as requested. Kaspar did not subpoena the officer. The county court affirmed the suspension, but the court of appeals reversed and rendered. Supreme Court reversed and remanded.
Substantial evidence supported the decision of an Administrative Law Judge suspending a driver’s license for 180 days, finding that a state trooper had probable cause to believe that a licensee who refused to provide a blood or breath specimen was driving while intoxicated. The evidence showed that licensee was uncontrollably crying, had emotional outbursts, had glassy, red eyes, and that her breath smelled strongly of alcohol. A trial court upon appeal erred in relying on licensee’s contention that the Department of Public Safety failed to prove a temporal link between licensee’s driving and her intoxication.
Motorist appealed an administrative suspension of his driver’s license based on a refusal to take a breath test after he was arrested for driving while intoxicated. After a hearing with the Department of Public Safety (DPS), an administrative law judge upheld the suspension. Motorist filed a petition of appeal. The County Court at Law No. 3, Galveston County, granted the petition and reversed the suspension. DPS appealed. The Court of Appeals held that evidence was sufficient for ALJ to conclude that motorist refused to provide a breath specimen for alcohol testing. Reversed and rendered.
Motorist applied to renew his driver’s license, but was denied because he owed $8,580.00 in surcharges under the Driver Responsibility Program. Motorist then petitioned for an occupational license, claiming that his license was suspended for his failure to pay the surcharges and that he had essential need for transportation to and from work. The County Court at Law No. 2, Tarrant County, denied motorist’s petition for an occupational license, and he appealed. The Court of Appeals held that motorist should not have been denied occupational driver’s license based on his failure to pay surcharges under the Driver Responsibility Program. Reversed and remanded.
No additional resources for Texas at this time.