Maryland Judge’s Death Linked to Past Divorce Case

Judge Andrew Wilkinson/Pedro Argote

A Maryland Circuit Court Judge, Andrew Wilkinson, 52, was fatally shot outside his Hagerstown residence. The Washington County Sheriff’s Office has identified 49-year-old Pedro Argote as a person of interest in relation to Judge Wilkinson’s killing.

Upon discovery of the incident around 8 p.m. on Thursday, Judge Wilkinson was transported to Meritus Medical Center, where he succumbed to his injuries. To ensure the security of other judges residing in Washington County, state troopers were deployed overnight, stated Elena Russo, the state police spokesperson.

Records indicate that Judge Wilkinson presided over Argote’s divorce case in June 2022. Attempts to reach attorneys involved in the case yielded no immediate response.

Judge Wilkinson, a 1994 graduate from the University of North Carolina, earned his law degree from Emory University School of Law in 1997. Subsequently, he served as a circuit court law clerk in Washington County. Sworn in as a circuit court judge in 2020, he expressed gratitude to retired Judge Frederick C. Wright III for influencing his career trajectory during his swearing-in. Due to Wright hiring his mother as a law clerk in 1983, Hagerstown became Wilkinson’s home.

In Maryland, circuit courts manage major criminal and civil cases in every county, often processing appeals from district courts.

Ashley Wilburn, an attorney representing children in Argote’s divorce case, eulogized Judge Wilkinson: “Judge Wilkinson was an exemplary man, father, husband, and judge. I’m privileged to have known and collaborated with him.”

Hagerstown, Maryland, located roughly 75 miles northwest of Baltimore, borders West Virginia and Pennsylvania.

Chris Morris
Author: Chris Morris

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