Thursday, November 4, 2004

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Attorney General Greg Abbott Announces New List Of Most Wanted Child Support Evaders

AUSTIN – Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott today in Austin asked the public’s help to find a mother who appears on his new Top Ten List of Texas’ Most Wanted Child Support Evaders. Traci Chavez owes $46,614 to her two sons, who live with their father in the Austin area. General Abbott met with the boys’ father, who described the difficulties of raising his children without their mother’s support.

Also on the list is Edwin Jacobson, whose last known address is Buda. Jacobson owes $21,000 for the care of a Lubbock child. The Child Support Evaders on the newly announced list, which includes two women and eight men, owe a combined $486,000 in overdue child support. These negligent parents have gone underground to elude officials and avoid arrest for failing to pay child support.

“Traci Chavez and Edwin Jacobson have turned their backs on their children by refusing to pay child support. Please help me hold these Child Support Evaders accountable by providing information that will lead to their arrest,” said Attorney General Abbott. “Parents who avoid their responsibilities to their children must be apprehended and punished.”

The Attorney General provides a toll free number, 1-866-EVADERS (382-3377), for reporting information on the whereabouts of missing Evaders. Photos of the Evaders are available on the Attorney General's web site at www.texasattorneygeneral.gov. Many Evader arrests are made following tips from the public, the Attorney General noted.

The Attorney General works with local law enforcement to arrest and incarcerate parents who are delinquent in their child support payments. All of the parents on the new 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 are being singled out because they have the ability to take responsibility for their children but refuse to do so. Incarceration is the only option for parents who flagrantly ignore a court’s order to pay child support. The Attorney General’s Office 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 families collect child support. The Division handled nearly one million cases and collected $1.677 billion for the fiscal year that ended August 31.

For a parent to be named a Most Wanted Child Support Evader, court-ordered delinquent support must be in excess of $5,000 and an arrest warrant issued. The location of the parent must be unknown, and no child support payments made in the last six months. The parent must not be 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:

John Gutierrez owes $101,635 for one child in San Antonio.
Last known address: San Antonio

Roy Bowden owes $80,058 for two children in Houston.
Last known address: Houston

Howard Ramsey owes $57,527 for two children in El Paso.
Last known address: El Paso

James White owes $57,745 for one child in Mesquite.
Last known address: Mesquite

Victor Colter owes $50,867 for one child in Ft. Worth.
Last known address: Ft. Worth

Traci Chavez owes $46,614 for two children in Pflugerville.
Last known address: Pflugerville

Patrick Sullivan owes $26,680 for one child in Houston.
Last known address: Houston

Irma Marin owes $22,868 for four children in El Paso.
Last known address: El Paso

Edwin Jacobson owes $21,236 for one child in Buda.
Last known address: Buda

Pablo Cantu owes $20,886 for one child in San Antonio.
Last known address: San Antonio

Click here to view wanted poster of the top ten child support evaders

Seven evaders have been arrested from the January 2004 Top Ten List. A total of 51 Evaders have been arrested or located since Attorney General Abbott took office.

Anyone with information about a Child Support Evader should contact the Attorney General by calling the hotline 1-866-EVADERS (382-3377), e-mailing evaders@cs.texasattorneygeneral.gov or by writing Texas Child Support Evaders, Office of the Attorney General, Child Support Division, P.O. Box 12017, Austin, Texas 78711-2017.