Guam News Factor – Breaking News: Maryland Judge Fatally Shot, Suspect on the Loose
Federal authorities and local police are conducting a widespread search for a suspect in the fatal shooting of Maryland Circuit Court Judge Andrew Wilkinson. The suspect has been identified as 49-year-old Pedro Argote, who allegedly lost custody of his children in a divorce proceeding presided over by Judge Wilkinson.
The tragic incident unfolded in Hagerstown, a peaceful community located approximately 75 miles northwest of Baltimore. Judge Wilkinson was shot outside his residence while his wife and son were present. Although he was rushed to the hospital, the esteemed judge sadly succumbed to his injuries.
Pedro Argote is now considered armed and dangerous, and law enforcement agencies are urging the public to exercise extreme caution and refrain from approaching him. Instead, individuals with any information regarding Argote’s whereabouts are encouraged to immediately contact the nearest authorities.
The motive behind the attack is believed to stem from the custody ruling concerning Argote’s children. However, the exact number of children involved remains unclear at this time. It is important to note that prior to this tragic incident, there were incidents of verbal domestic assault reported at Argote’s residence, although he had no known criminal record.
Following the shooting, Maryland State Police swiftly deployed troopers to protect other judges within the area as a precautionary measure. Although authorities currently do not believe there is an ongoing threat to judges in the county, such precautions are crucial given the recent rise in threats against judicial officials.
Judge Andrew Wilkinson had been serving as a judge with the 4th Judicial Circuit since January 2020. Described as an active member of the community, his untimely demise has sent shockwaves throughout the region. Colleagues and friends are mourning the loss of a dedicated and respected public servant.
This tragic incident serves as a chilling reminder of the increasing threats faced by judges nationwide. Disturbingly, federal judges have reported over 4,500 threats and inappropriate communications in the 2021 fiscal year alone, according to the U.S. Marshals Service.
As authorities intensify their efforts to bring Pedro Argote to justice, the community mourns the loss of Judge Andrew Wilkinson. The search continues, and resilience and unity prevail as Guam News Factor will bring you the latest updates on this developing story. Stay tuned for further updates.
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