A judge in the A.J. Armstrong case publicly said the court doesn’t feel he can have a fair trial in Harris County and has filed a motion to change the venue of the third trial.
Reporters spoke with Judge Kelli Johnson after she filed a late motion, ordering a hearing to decide if the trial will be moved somewhere else.
The matter has become significant because the judge is calling for this hearing, not the prosecution or the defense.
A.J. Armstrong stood trial twice in Harris County for the 2016 murders of his parents, Dawn and Antonio Armstrong Sr. Both times, jurors were unable to decide if he was guilty or not guilty.
Here is a breakdown of the last two juries:
- 2019: Eight said A.J. was guilty, and four said he was not guilty
- 2022: Four said A.J. was guilty, and eight said he was not guilty
The motion filed does not guarantee that the trial will be moved, as both sides will get to make their cases for and against.
Right now, jury selection is scheduled for Feb. 24. Johnson told reporters she expects the decision to happen in two weeks.
Reporters also reached out to A.J. Armstrong’s defense team, but they declined.
Since a final decision has not been made, it’s unclear where it could be held.