Local DA's custom license plates deemed 'objectionable', cancelled

Published: Sep. 9, 2017 at 4:04 PM CDT
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For 35 years, Fannin County District Attorney Richard Glaser says his plates have read 'HANG EM' with no problems.

"It really sorta fits what I do," said Glaser. "It harkens back to frontier justice, in fact, they had a picture of Clint Eastwood, 'Hang Em High', that sort of gave me the idea back in the early '80s."

But now, the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles is cancelling the plate, citing it as "potentially objectionable to one or more members of the public".

"If I'm out on the road, people will drive by, give me a thumbs up, or clap or something like that," said Glaser. "I guess the people in Austin have a little different sense of humor."

The DMV told Glaser they had received a complaint for the plate, so he requested a copy of it through the Freedom of Information Act.

What he found was that it was an appeal from somebody else's plate that had been cancelled and that person had mentioned Glaser's plate saying, "How can the District Attorney for Fannin County have 'HANG EM' and that not be threatening? Just wondering?".

"He's since written a letter to them saying it wasn't a complaint, they took it out of context, but they didn't seem to care about that," said Glaser.

Glaser then proposed a new license plate, 'GELD EM'. It was assigned to him, but the shortly after deemed "objectionable" and cancelled, too.

"It was a little shocking to me I guess that there's people down in Austin that probably make a pretty good salary that decide stuff like this," said Glaser.

His latest proposal: 'DA 336', after the 336th District Court he practices in.

"It's just a waste of time, I decided. If they're going to be that upset about it, I'll just go ahead and get something more plain-vanilla."