Fort Worth Councilwoman Driving With Misleading Plates

By Jack Douglas Jr., CBS 11 News

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Fort Worth City Councilwoman Kathleen Hicks is seen by her supporters as a champion of economic development in her near-southeast side district, where financial needs are plenty.

A new Jack in the Box has opened up. A Walmart is planned. And fancy street lights, in parts of Hicks’ district, now light up the neighborhoods.

For those reasons, her resume is quite impressive.

So why does she have a license plate on her late-model Porsche that suggests she is a state judge when she is not?

Following this week’s city council meeting in downtown Fort Worth, CBS 11’s Arezow Doost tried to question Hicks about the matter.

“Is this your car?” Doost asked, as they stood next to the councilwoman’s Porsche Boxster. “Do you have a card?” replied Hicks.  “Are you a state judge” asked Doost. “I need to get your card,” said Hicks, again avoiding the question.

Despite being promised a business card, Hicks declined to answer any questions. Instead, she got into her car, waved goodbye, and drove off.

In a subsequent call to Hicks’ office, one of her staff members speculated that maybe the councilwoman was in a car belonging to her mother, Maryellen Hicks, indeed a former state judge in Tarrant County who left the bench 17 years ago. The elder Hicks has since worked as a visiting judge and as a mediator.

Records from the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, however, show Kathleen Hicks as the owner of the car. And that triggered more questions – with no immediate answers – since the law says “State Judge” plates can only go on vehicles if a judge owns or “controls” them.

picture 1 Fort Worth Councilwoman Driving With Misleading Plates
“It doesn’t pass the smell test,” said Fort Worth criminal defense lawyer Trent Loftin, whose brother happens to be a state judge in neighboring Parker County.

Loftin questioned why anyone would go to the trouble of putting judge plates on their car, when they are not a judge, unless it was in hopes of getting favorable treatment from traffic cops. Such a ploy might work, he added, especially for someone in a fast car – like a Porsche.

“If you are driving down the street and you have two people speeding … I think the officer, as a courtesy, might give more discretion or more leniency to the individual with the state (judge) plates,” Loftin said.

Daryl Coffey has state judge plates on his vehicles, but for a good reason … he’s a judge, and has been for 20 years.  Coffey said he was puzzled why anyone would want judge plates. After all, he knows from personal experience they don’t stop the cops pulling over speeding motorists.  “I’ve been stopped,” the judge lamented, “two times … in the last year.”


One Comment

  1. Bobby Nelson says:

    This was a lead story? Who cares!

    1. who cares says:

      you dont care that a councilwoman, meant to abide by the law (as well as have morals) is dishonest and dodgy? what else is she dishonest about in her line of work?

    2. Paul Sinclair says:

      Why is the state even putting ‘State Judge’ on plates to being with?

    3. BDK says:

      But you read it anyway? You’re a moron.

  2. JENNIFER says:

    That was a stupid report. There are more important things to report than what her plates say…… The tax office gave them to whoever got the plates…. You need to find out why they gave you a stupid assignment… If the police do give her a break then they are stupid too cause if they run her ID then they will see who she is. Maybe it was her moms car and if it was so what. Next time report something else more important.

    1. John Langevin says:

      Even minor ethics violations are unacceptable from our elected officials.

    2. Burleson says:

      It was not her moms car get real everyone knows what the councilwoman drives. It is her car, “judge” she may but she is NOT a judge. Why is it that her mom is no longer a judge is another question.

  3. Janie says:

    Yeah, I agree with Jennifer, report the important things like what will be in style for my poodle this fall, or the lastest cookie sale, or how to regrow your hair, you know, like channels 4, 5, 8, and 33’s investigative reporters do.

  4. Dominick says:

    Kathleen Hicks is holding herself out as a Texas attorney…and she is NOT an attorney! Please pass this story on to the Texas Bar Regional Office for Dallas.
    They can be reached at:

    Chief Disciplinary Counsel – Dallas Regional Office
    14651 Dallas Pkwy., #925
    Dallas, TX 75254
    Phone: 972/383-2900

    1. shelley says:

      Why should this be passed on to the Dallas Regional Office? Is there not one in Fort Worth?

  5. Gary says:

    This is mess you see in Dallas civics! Not Fort Worth!

    If Kathleen Hicks, wants to behave like a Dallas commissioner wannabe, she’s needs to take her little boxter and her mama’s entitlement plates East on I-30 30 miles, and go sit with John Wiley Price!

    Gary Abshire

    1. Tom T says:

      How nasty Kathyleen Hicks has nothing to do with John Wiley Price. Hate Hate Hate

      1. Burleson says:

        You obviously don’t know her!!!

  6. Donna says:

    It’s like carrying a false badge. It’s illegal. I believe this article is exposing much more than you think. It would be like announcing the winner before the game was over…or announcing the tally results of an election before the votes have been counted….and being right. Hmmmm…. But I do agree there are far more important things going on than judicial corruption… it a link in the corruption chain…a very important link…because they have given themselves the task of setting laws and confused when upholding them…and the laws have slowly swung toward compliance without common sense …Here’s a story. Indiana Supreme Court Judge ruled it illegal to refuse illegal entry and search by any police official.. He wiped his ass with the Constitution. .No warrant neccessary in Indiana since last Thursday…check it out if you haven’t already.

  7. Joe says:

    Good report. What’s disturbing is the lack of concern by some of the respondents; one has to question their lack of moral judgment. Or perhaps it’s too politically correct?

    1. who cares says:

      totally agree, joe

  8. darrell says:

    better start checking her campaign records, bank accounts, ties between business’s she has promoted and relatives. check any city accounts she has access to. we have another minority elected official trying to line their pockets, promote themselves against the law, at taxpayer expense.

    next, they will play the race card. if the shoe fits, must be your shoe.

    1. Nonya says:

      Maybe she’s related in some weird way to Eddie Bernice Johnson from Dallas?

  9. les says:

    one oicture say’s it all !!!

  10. Andri says:

    Ms. Hicks might have committed an error, but it is up to her and her confessor. She is Catholic and has assited at Mass in the readings and distribution of the Eucharist. Many people can find fault in others, but it is those who get involved in their community to better their neighbors and the city at large, who are in a fishbowl for all others to see! We should commend her for having the courage to be involved in more than basic civic duty. Ms. Hicks does not know me and I do not live in her district. If I were involved in the City as much as Ms. Hicks is, the reporters would have a heyday with my faults. By the way, should I take my United States Marine Corps license plate frame from my car? I never was in the Corps, but I honor my family members who served in the Corps and all the current and former Corps members. This is different from license tags but reporters could find it a fault if I were in any civic and visible profile as Ms. Hicks.

    1. who cares says:

      Andri- no offense but…just because she’s a religious women doesn’t make it right for her to do something illegal. In fact, your comment is almost outrageous. So do you also believe that a priest/father/pastor/ect. shouldn’t be punished for molesting people? Or say….raping a women in Virgina? because they “assisted in mass”, or were a known part of the community?! It’s asinine! And yeah, if it’s illegal for you to have a MC plate, then you probably shouldn’t have one.

      1. Andri says:

        Hi who cares, well I don’t have an MC plate, I have a license plate frame. I want Ms. Hicks to take responsibility and accountability for what error she has done, and I stated her religious activity because she would have access to another source that would help her make amends, or show her the wrong that she has done. Its tough to get caught as she did and now she has to face the fact that it is a dishonest act, as you have pointed out. Without the reporter, we would not be having this discussion, so the reporter did have an effect to get Ms. Hicks back on the road to honesty. As for the other comparison that you mention, it is out of the realm of comparison to having a TX judge plate on the car. However, I sincerely believe that anyone with authority over others that abuses children, youth or adults should be punished to the highest extent of the law, that includes the bishops (and anyone in the line of command), that hide the perps by transferring them to other assignments. Thanks for your good points and thoughtful response.

    2. Dominick says:

      Please do not associate good practicing Catholics with Ms. Hicks.

    3. Burleson says:

      TOTALLY different, a plate ring is by no means an act of misrepresentation. Sporting State Judge license plates when you are not a State Judge is a disgrace to those who actually served the position. The article shed the light upon true moral judgement or lack of.

  11. Sarah Ireland says:

    Have any of you ever driven a car borrowed from a parent or a friend – maybe yours was being repaired? Ever driven a rental car? Then shame on you fro pretending to be someone that you are not. Unless your last name is Hertz or Budget you might get ambushed by this reporter. I know Kathleen and she is one of the most honest people you could ever HOPE to know. Can’t say that I trust Ms. Doost of Jack Douglas any more though. Same on Channl 11 for their ambush on Kathleen – what did you expect her to do? Get off the phone and answer your questions that you kept yelling at her? Or maybe you’re just upset because she didn’t give you rights to a story recently and this is your way of getting back? Hmmmmm? One wonders.

    1. who cares says:

      i didn’t hear any yelling…

    2. darrell says:

      shut up, your an idiot. read the story and the facts. ITS HER CAR!!! not borrowed.

  12. Minnie Hodge says:

    This is a non-story, iif it were not the type of car that it is, whomever alerted channel 11 in Dallas would have found something better to do, do we know who else on this Council or the Mayors office could be guilty of similar offenses, whether she bought the car or her Mother bought it, really is not my business,
    The reporter’s lead into this story was correct, it stated the accomplishements this young woman has, she was elected several times by the people in her district, so she should be applauded for this, is there someone who is afraid of not being able to control her, or is it her Mother that you are afraid of , Mayor and Council Member past or present may want to start early giving you something to think about instead of the work that she has been able to do?
    I believe if we look hard enough in all our lives there is something that we could dig up including the reporter, but why waste the time,

    1. darrell says:

      as an elected official this woman should be the most concerned that she obeys the law in all respects. especially when it come to the perceptions of the public of her. to openly mislead others with these plates by placing her “status” above her true elected/appointed position is a premeditated attempt to influence public opinion through deception.

      bottom line is. she is deceitful, self serving, and if she will mislead the public in such a “minor” non-issue as you refer to it, then what is she doing that we havnt seen with the “real” issues that affect us and our taxdollars we entrusted her with everyday?

      1. who cares says:

        spot on, darrell. it boggles my mind that some of the people here think this is no big deal. sure, she hasn’t committed murder (that we know of), but the attitude that this “councilwoman” has is decietful and arrogant. it’s a real shame that people don’t see anything wrong with this.

Comments are closed.

More From CBS Dallas / Fort Worth

Drip Pan: CBS Local App
Drip Pan: Weather App

Watch & Listen LIVE