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Judge in Walmart shooter case steps down due to conflict, says she knew a shooting victim

The judge assigned to preside over the case of accused Walmart shooter Patrick Crusius has asked that the case be reassigned because she knew one the victims killed in the attack and that person’s family.

In a statement released Wednesday, Judge Angie Juarez Barill said because of the conflict she could not accept the assignment. She did not indicate which victim she knew, but said she had informed both the prosecution and defense of the situation.

Barill had been selected last week to handle the case following Crusius’ indictment by a grand jury on one count of capital murder of multiple persons.

In her statement Wednesday, Barill said she had also requested that the El Paso County Council of Judges transfer the case to another judge due to the expected length of the trial.

“I am a candidate for Chief Justice for the 8th Court of Appeals, therefore, I will not stand for re-election to the 346th State District Court at the end of my term in December 2020. A case of this magnitude should begin with a Judge who can be reasonably sure to see it through to its conclusion,” she wrote.

Michael Cuccaro, executive director of the judges’ council, said Barill’s replacement would be picked soon.

KVIA 2019

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