Parents have a moral and legal obligation to support their children," Attorney General Abbott said. "Those who ignore their court-ordered child support obligations must be held accountable for violating the law. We urge Texans to help us locate parents who are wanted by authorities for failing to pay their child support."
The Child Support Division maintains a toll free number, (866) EVADERS (382-3377), so that Texans can provide information on the whereabouts of missing evaders. Photos of the evaders are available on the Attorney General's Web site at www.texasattorneygeneral.gov. In recent years, many missing parents have been located thanks to anonymous tips from the public. Seven of the ten evaders are making a second appearance on this year's Top Ten List in hopes that renewed publicity will generate fresh leads to find them.
The Attorney General's Child Support Division works with local law enforcement to locate and incarcerate delinquent parents when courts issue warrants for their arrests. All of the parents on the evader list are wanted on civil or criminal warrants. They face jail time and monetary penalties for failing to pay child support.
The child support evaders on the Top Ten List were selected because they have the ability to take responsibility for their children but refuse to do so. Incarceration is the only option for parents who repeatedly ignore court orders requiring them to pay child support. The Office of the Attorney General helps parents who lack the ability to pay child support by referring them to job training and employment services.
The Attorney General's Child Support Division is directed by state and federal law to help collect child support for Texas families. The division handles more than one million cases and collected $2.78 billion in child support the fiscal year that ended Aug 31. More than $15 billion in child support has been collected during the Abbott administration.
To satisfy the Texas Family Code's requirement that certain delinquent cases be released to the public, the OAG's Most Wanted Child Support Evader list helps raise public awareness about noncustodial parents who owe more than $5,000 and are the subject of an arrest warrant. In addition, parents named to the list have failed to make child support payments during the previous six months, their locations are unknown, and they are not involved in bankruptcy proceedings or receiving welfare benefits. The parent with custody of the children must sign a confidentiality waiver before the evader can be added to the list.
The Top Ten Evaders, with last known address and estimated arrears:
David Martin owes $404,827 for two children.
Last known address: Floydada
Tomas Roman owes $160,928 for two children in Katy.
Last known address: Houston
Jimmie McCullough owes $139,881 for two children in Fayetteville.
Last known address: Texarkana
Billy Fleming owes $127,383 for three children in Texas City.
Last known address: Mesquite
Guadalupe Aceves owes $71,073 for three children in Balch Springs.
Last known address: Dallas
Jorge Hernandez owes $55,267 for five children in El Paso.
Last known address: El Paso
Marcus Spanihel, Jr. owes $54,180 for one child in Burton.
Last known address: Hallettsville
Michelle Falco owes $51,204 for two children in Richardson.
Last known address: Algonquin, IL
Kurt Lindner owes $36,103 for one child in Abilene.
Last known address: Abilene
Rudy Velez owes $18,351 for one child in El Paso.
Last known address: Lubbock
A total of 104 evaders have been arrested or located since Attorney General Abbott took office in December 2002. Anyone with information about a child support evader should contact the attorney general by calling (866) EVADERS (382-3377) or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org