Pretty weak ticket if you stop somebody for that and cite them.
I agree, wonder if anybody can cite the relevant law...sounds like an out of control LEO (or town) to me, and that sort of this does happen occasionally.
Texas Transportation code RULE §217.27 b,1
"(1) must display two license plates, one at the exterior
front and one at the exterior
rear of the vehicle that are securely fastened at the exterior front and rear of the vehicle in a horizontal position of not less than 12 inches from the ground, measuring from the bottom, except that a vehicle described by Transportation Code, §621.2061 may place the rear plate so that it is clearly visible; or
2) must display one plate that is securely fastened at or as close as practical to the exterior rear of the vehicle in a position not less than 12 inches from the ground, measuring from the bottom if the vehicle is a road tractor, motorcycle, trailer or semitrailer."
Also Must be visible from 50'There is a possible "out" if issued a citation dependent on hardware and the judge, this will be a long quote to give relevant info.
TRANSPORTATION CODE CHAPTER 504 Sec. 504.945
" WRONG, FICTITIOUS, ALTERED, OR OBSCURED LICENSE PLATE. (a) A person commits an offense if the person attaches to or displays on a motor vehicle a license plate that:
(1) is issued for a different motor vehicle;
(2) is issued for the vehicle under any other motor vehicle law other than by the department;
(3) is assigned for a registration period other than the registration period in effect;
(4) is fictitious;
(5) has blurring or reflective matter that significantly impairs the readability of the name of the state in which the vehicle is registered or the letters or numbers of the license plate number at any time;
(6) has an attached illuminated device or sticker, decal, emblem, or other insignia that is not authorized by law and that interferes with the readability of the letters or numbers of the license plate number or the name of the state in which the vehicle is registered; or
(7) has a coating, covering, protective substance, or other material that:
(A) distorts angular visibility or detectability;
(B) alters or obscures one-half or more of the name of the state in which the vehicle is registered; or
(C) alters or obscures the letters or numbers of the license plate number or the color of the plate.
(b) Except as provided by Subsection (e), an offense under Subsection (a) is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $200, unless it is shown at the trial of the offense that the owner knowingly altered or made illegible the letters, numbers, and other identification marks, in which case the offense is a Class B misdemeanor.
(c) Subsection (a)(7) may not be construed to apply to:
(1) a trailer hitch installed on a vehicle in a normal or customary manner;
(2) a transponder, as defined by Section 228.057, that is attached to a vehicle in the manner required by the issuing authority;
(3) a wheelchair lift or wheelchair carrier that is attached to a vehicle in a normal or customary manner;
(4) a trailer being towed by a vehicle; or
(5) a bicycle or motorcycle rack that is attached to a vehicle in a normal or customary manner.
(d) A court may dismiss a charge brought under Subsection (a)(3), (5), (6), or (7) if the defendant:
(1) remedies the defect before the defendant's first court appearance;
(2) pays an administrative fee not to exceed $10; and
(3) shows that the vehicle was issued a plate by the department that was attached to the vehicle, establishing that the vehicle was registered for the period during which the offense was committed.
(e) An offense under Subsection (a)(4) is a Class B misdemeanor."