Judge resigns over allegations she texted prosecutor from bench during trial
Updated On: Oct 21 2013 06:16:59 PM CDT
A District Court judge in Polk County has agreed to resign following allegations that she texted a prosecutor from the bench during a trial and spoke to jurors improperly.
Such 'ex parte' communication is considered improper and prompted a recent investigation by the State Commission of Judicial Conduct. The Commission, which is charged with monitoring the behavior and reviewing complaints about state judges, concluded the matter without the "findings of fact" or "conclusions of law."
Local 2 Investigates filed a story about the 258th District Court Judge alleged texting habits in March, before the judicial conduct commission took up the matter. (Read that story here) Elizabeth Coker has agreed not to serve as a judge in the state of Texas ever again. (See the Commission's Report here).
The State Commission of Judicial Conduct also noted in the report, "the Judge may not have been candid and truthful in her testimony before the Commission..."
Coker's official resignation is effective December 6, but she will not be on the bench again as of Monday.
Coker, a Baylor graduate first elected in 1999, has declined our repeated requests for interviews, but did write a letter about her resignation -- part of it reads, "The Judicial Commission made no finding or determinations of fact in my voluntary resignation, and I have not admitted guilt, fault or liability in my voluntary resignation."