Investigation Into Judge Tom Greenwell's Death Widens

As plans are being finalized for a memorial service for late District Judge Tom Greenwell, the investigation into his death is widening.

Nueces County Sheriff's Department investigators are digging deeper into the judge's personal and financial life. They said something in his personal life had to have been so bad, that suicide was the only way out -- and law enforcement officers are determined to find out what that was.

Nueces County Sheriff Jim Kaelin said investigators are looking to question several people of interest to the case, one of those being the Greenwell's close friend who is reportedly living in the judge's home.

That man is Albert Fuentes, and sources close to the investigation said that Fuentes had been cooperating with investigators but is now refusing to speak to them.

The sheriff said his investigators are looking at all of the judge's phone and financial records. They believe the scope of their probe will widen to include several people.

Judge Greenwell was found dead by a cleaning crew at the Nueces County Courthouse at about 6 p.m. Monday. He had a single gunshot wound to the head, and investigators believe the shot was fired at around 12:45 p.m.

In the meantime, plans for Greenwell's funeral services are in the works, and the 119th district court will continue hearing cases. Retired District Judge Jack Hunter was notified Wednesday by Governor Rick Perry that he will preside over that court for the next 30 days.

"It's not an ordinary transition. It's not somebody retiring. It's none of those things. It's different," Hunter said. "Tom was a good man. A good judge. Well liked. And it's going to be hard to replace him, and all I can do as his, as senior retired judge, is hold the court together; and for the next judge, whoever he or she may be, and hope that we can tread water until then and get some business done."

Memorial services are now being planned for Thursday, July 25.


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