I've been an Austin criminal defense attorney for over 18 years. I opened my own office immediately after receiving my law license and haven't looked back. Since then I've dedicated my career to representing people accused of breaking the law in Travis County. I enjoy every day of this job because helping people is built into my DNA.
My philosophy is to fight every aspect of the charge, while providing guidance to my client on ways to minimize the impact to their life. I try to show my clients that a criminal case is a great opportunity to make some positive changes, and that these changes usually result in much better outcome on their case.
- Trinity University – San Antonio, TX – B.A. in History 1992
- University of Texas School of Law – Austin, TX – Juris Doctor 2001
- The Defendant's Guide to Defense - How to Help Your Lawyer Get the Best Result (Misdemeanor Edition)
Austin Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
- Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
- Travis County Bar Association
- State Bar of Texas
- State Certified Instructor for the DWI Education Program (DWIE)
- State Certified Instructor for the Drug Offender Education Program (DOEP)
Mary Ann Espiritu
Having moved to Texas at the age of seven, Mary Ann Espiritu has deep roots in the Lone Star State. She learned the value of hard work from her parents, who emigrated from the Philippines in 1967. As the oldest of three, she is a master at the art of negotiation and a strong leader—and she traces her drive to help others to her father, who practiced medicine for 30 years.
Mary Ann was raised in a small town in southeast Texas; she earned her bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Texas in Austin and went on to graduate from the University of Toledo College of Law. She has been licensed to practice in the state of Texas since 2001. After five years of working for the Government, she switched to defense work in 2006. Those five years working for the state have given her keen insight into the mind of a state’s attorney; that knowledge is essential to providing clients the best possible defense against government charges.
Her desire to secure the best possible outcome for her clients also makes her a strong advocate for ongoing education. Mary Ann has been trained on the administration of Field Sobriety Tests and the Intoxilyzer. She has twice attended the American Chemical Society’s Gas Chromatography school. Gas chromatography is a common method used to test for alcohol in the blood; her familiarity with this technique has proven invaluable when defending clients against alcohol-related offenses.
Like many good attorneys, Mary Ann is smart, driven and determined—but what makes her an outstanding attorney is her empathy. In her words, “I understand that there are situations where people make bad choices. That doesn’t make them bad people. I see the good in each person and will aggressively defend them.”
When she is not working on behalf of her clients, she enjoys Austin’s diverse live music scene. She is also an accomplished musician herself, having played, at various times, the piano, flute, alto sax and violin.
Courtney graduated from the University of Texas Law School in 2010 and began working for us in December 2011. She is a veteran of the U.T. Law Criminal Defense Clinic and has practiced criminal defense exclusively since being licensed in November 2011. She is a devout Dallas Cowboys fan and loves her two dogs, Murphy and Rico.
- University of Texas Austin – Austin, TX – B.S. in Kinesiology 2006
- University of Texas School of Law – Austin, TX – Juris Doctor 2010