Former City of Cleveland Police Chief Ricky Lynn Foxworth, 52, was found guilty of 2 counts of felony theft in Judge Robert H. Trapp’s 411th District Court on September 8th, 2010. This afternoon he was given five years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Prosecutor Joe Martin with the Polk County District Attorney’s Office was visibly pleased with the ruling. Reports to the DA’s Office of allegations from multiple complainants of being swindled out of what amounts to hundreds of thousands of dollars led to charges being filed.
The crimes covered Montgomery, San Jacinto and Polk Counties. Charges were also pending in Montgomery County but a deal was reached with Foxworth that if he didn’t appeal the Montgomery County charges would be included with the Polk County charges.
The shady dealings were supposed to have involved cheap timber, heavy equipment, and cattle. Prosecutor Joe Martin had at least 6 witnesses take the witness stand. Several witnesses recounted how Foxworth conned them into deals based on his words alone and nothing in writing. In general, Foxworth would tell his victims that he needed some money up front and that he could have a quick turnaround selling timber, cattle, or heavy equipment profiting thousands of dollars. Valid checks in the tens of thousands of dollars were written payable to Foxworth’s name. After time would pass, the victims would get in touch with Foxworth who would offer varying excuses as to why the deal hadn’t yet transpired. In many cases, Foxworth would give his victims checks claiming the payback checks were good and valid, but the checks would come back insufficient funds.
Defense Attorney Joe Roth argued that nobody forced these people to do business with Foxworth, and that he was working to pay his victims back. One witness stated after being swindled out of over $30,000 that after chasing down Foxworth for months that he finally “…just gave up“.
Foxworth was placed on probation in the mid 1990s for theft. Foxworth is also former Chief Deputy for the San Jacinto County Sheriff’s Department.