Judge who was suspended for fraud is arrested for firing gun at husband’s girlfriend


A suspended Texas judge who last year was indicted on federal wire fraud charges has been arrested in connection to an assault involving her husband’s girlfriend at a Houston home, her lawyer said.

Police took state District Judge Alexandra Smoots-Thomas into custody at her Rice Military home Wednesday morning, the lawyer continued, with authorities saying she was accused of firing a shotgun during an argument with a woman Monday night in the 14000 block of Jewel Meadow Drive. Smoots-Thomas, who lost her re-election bid in July, has been out on bond for federal charges and was not permitted to possess a weapon, court records show.

Smoots-Thomas called her attorney, Kent Schaffer, as police arrested her. Schaffer said, citing police, that the allegation involved an altercation with her husband’s girlfriend.

She was suspended last November following the indictment over allegations that she spent campaign donations on personal expenses.

Over the past year, Schaffer said, Smoots-Thomas has undergone cancer treatment, been indicted in a federal case and then removed from her bench in the 164th Civil Court.

“She’s been in a real tail spin,” Schaffer said.

Smoots-Thomas has since been charged with aggravated assault wiht a deadly weapon, court records show. Bond was set at $10,000.

Police said the shooting happened as followed: A woman, now identified as Smoots-Thomas, parked outside the home and alerted the resident’s daughter that she was there. She then honked her car horn, police said. An argument erupted between the women and the shooter fired at least one shot. Police said the shooter then fled. No one was hurt.

On Tuesday, before her arrest, the judge declined to comment when reached at her home and slammed the door shut.

At the Jewel Meadow Drive home, a woman said a pair of closely-grouped bullet holes above the garage were from the shooting. She declined to talk further because a police investigator was there asking questions.

The detective would not elaborate on the investigation either as he walked to his car.

Police spokesman Kese Smith said a resident in the home identified the suspected shooter.

The shooting was witnessed by at least one other person, Smith continued. A neighbor who declined to be identified said she heard the gunfire and stepped outside as the shooter drove off. She said heard a woman shout, “Why are you shooting at my daughter.”

The federal trial on the judge’s wire fraud charges, stemming from misusing $24,892 in campaign funds, is slated for November. In that case, she was accused of using the money on a home mortgage, private school tuition, a Prada handbag and a ring from Zales.

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