After a week-long manhunt, the person suspected of killing US Circuit Judge Andrew Wilkinson has been found dead.
Pedro Argote, 49, was found dead on Thursday at around 11 a.m. in a highly forested region in Williamsport, Maryland, which is approximately 32 miles west of Frederick. This was confirmed by the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.
On Saturday afternoon, Argote’s body was discovered about a mile to the northwest of the location where his silver Mercedes SUV was discovered.
More information is anticipated to be released by sheriff’s authorities at a press conference at 3 p.m.
Argote is charged with shooting Judge Wilkinson on October 19 in the evening in his Hagerstown driveway.
Racing to the hospital, the Maryland Circuit Justice succumbed to his wounds.
According to court documents obtained by The U.S. Sun, Wilkinson presided over Argote’s divorce hearing, which was set for October 19 at 9:30 a.m.
Argote’s ex-wife was given full custody of their four children by Wilkinson, according to Washington County Sheriff Brian Albert.
Argote did not show up for the divorce trial.
Argote was accused of domestic violence prior to the start of divorce proceedings in 2022, and the judge further determined that he had no parental rights and was not eligible for visitation.
Argote’s 2009 Mercedes was also given to her and the kids by him, and he declared that the mother has “sole use and possession of the family home.”
Argote was off limits from that property now.
Sheriff Albert thinks the consequence of his divorce served as motivation for the shooting.
According to the sheriff, Wilkinson’s wife and kids were at home when the shootings took place.
Wilkinson, who was raised in Agana, Guam, studied law at Emory University and the University of North Carolina.
January 2020 saw his oath of office as a judge on the Washington County Circuit Court.
According to Sheriff Albert, accusations of verbal domestic abuse have prompted officials to visit Argote’s home on the outskirts of Hagerstown twice in recent years.
But before the couple started their divorce, the assault charges were withdrawn.
According to earlier reports from The U.S. Sun, Argote’s marriage to his ex-wife was turbulent and occasionally violent.
Records obtained by The U.S. Sun indicate that Argote was the one who filed for divorce from his wife in 2022. He did, nevertheless, stay with his family for a few months.
After his wife was granted possession of the house during the protracted divorce, Argote briefly relocated to West Virginia before taking up residence in a Frederick apartment.
Records showed Argote wanted to continue to live with his family for at least two years to save money in preparation for their eventual split.
During a magistrates court hearing last year – which did not involve Judge Wilkinson – Argote’s ex-wife testified that the couple fought constantly.
“Every time we are around each other, there is always some kind of fight for any reason whatsoever,” she said in court.
“There is a lot of conversations about Judge and Court,” she continued, adding that the arguments were becoming too much for their children, aged between three and 12.
Wilkinson remarked on Argote’s odd wishes in an opinion issued in March.
“It seems that Father entered the court process of divorce without recognizing that the court will not simply sit back and wait for two years while he figures out what he wants to do,” the justice wrote.