REPORT: Person of Interest Arrested in Shooting of Texas Judge

Judge shooting in Austin - Crime Scene - Crime Scene Photo Jay Janner-AP-AAS
AP File Photo via Austin American Statesman/Jay Janner

HOUSTON, Texas – A Houston area news station is reporting that a person of interest in the shooting of Austin Criminal District Court Judge Julie Kocurek has been arrested. The Travis County (Austin) judge was shot Friday night as she returned home. The entrance to her driveway had been blocked to force the driver out of the car.

UPDATE 10:05 p.m. Monday: KTRK ABC13 reported a person of interest has been arrested in Houston following a traffic stop in Houston. The person of interest, who reportedly has a case before Judge Kocurek, was arrested on unrelated charges. The as yet unnamed man is said to have a father living in Houston. The man was taken into custody about 8:30 p.m. Monday night. KTRK reported Austin police are calling the shooting an “attempted assassination.”

A person of interest has been arrested in Houston in connection to the shooting, according to ABC13 in Houston. No other information is available at this time.

Upon returning home to her upscale neighborhood Friday night at about 10 p.m., Judge Julie Kocurek noticed a bag of trash or a garbage can blocking her security gate to her driveway, unnamed officials told the Austin American-Statesman.

Breitbart Texas reported Monday morning that when her driver got out of her car to clear the pathway, an as-yet unidentified suspect opened fire, striking the judge. Law enforcement officials told the Statesman it appears the judge was struck by “flying glass and shrapnel,” rather than being directly hit by a bullet. No other passengers were struck by the gunfire.

Judge Kocurek was taken to a nearby hospital where several other Travis County judges came to show support and concern. She was initially reported to be in critical condition, but that was upgraded to stable early on Saturday morning.

Judge Kocurek was appointed to the bench by then Texas Governor George W. Bush. She is the only Republican to be elected to a district court bench in Travis County, Breitbart Texas’ Lana Shadwick reported on Saturday.

Authorities in Austin told the Statesman they suspected retaliation as a possible motive in the case.

This is a developing story.

This article has been updated with new information. KTRK initially reported that a suspect had been arrested. That term has now been changed to a person of interest.

Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas and is a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.