Texas Justice of the Peace Resigns As Texas Rangers Invited to Join Investigation Into JP’s Activities
Fred Nieto Jr. is still shown on the official Lavaca County website as Justice of the Peace for Precinct Two, but it’s questionable whether or not he is going to answer the phone whose number is shown there: Fred Nieto Jr. turned over his letter of resignation to Lavaca County Judge Tramer Woytek a few weeks ago.
Judge Woytek told the media at that time that he would be expecting Nieto to continue fulfilling his job requirements until the Powers That Be could find a replacement, because Woytek read the law as requiring this of Nieto, who is an elected official.
Let’s hope that doesn’t come back to bite anyone – because Fred Nieto didn’t give any reasons for why he up and quit the job of Justice of the Peace. We do have some ideas, though.
1. Lavaca County DA Investigation Into Fred Nieto, Jr. Joined by the Texas Rangers
For one thing, Heather McMinn, the Lavaca County District Attorney, started an official investigation into Fred Nieto’s activities on and off the bench. McMinn won’t say what that’s all about – just that the DA’s Office got several complaints about JP Nieto.
Oh, and McMinn phoned the Texas Rangers, asking them to join in the investigation. Hint, hint.
2. City of Moulton Puts Municipal Judge Fred Nieto, Jr. on Unpaid Admin Leave
Meanwhile, over in Moulton, Fred Nieto had another job: he presided over controversies there as a Moulton municipal judge. This month, the doors to the Moulton Municipal Court were closed for the month of September and Judge Nieto was placed on an unpaid administrative leave.
3. Fred Nieto Jr. Isn’t Still Selling Used Cars Any Longer, Either — DMV Shut Him Down
Under Texas law, a justice of the peace can make a living doing other things as well – and Fred Nieto, Jr. sold used cars for a living when he wasn’t being a Lavaca County Justice of the Peace or down at city hall, acting as a Municipal Court Judge.
That is, until last year. Seems that in August 2010 the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) found Nieto guilty of several violations of Texas law, and not only fined him but revoked his car sales license. Media investigations reveal that the DMV found that Nieto wasn’t keeping proper records over at the car lot, wasn’t paying sales tax, wasn’t transfering title on a timely basis, among other things.
A used car salesman who was serving as a Texas judge is now being investigated by the Texas Rangers. You know this story isn’t done.
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