Williamson County Judge pleads guilty to firearms charges

After pleading guilty to federal firearms charges, 70-year-old Williamson County Court at Law Judge Timothy L. Wright apologized to family, friends and the people of his county.

"No one is above the law. Especially not judges," Wright said.

He resigned his seat on the bench.

"In addition to my resignation I'm voluntarily surrendering my license to practice law, my concealed handgun license and my federal firearms license. And I hope that everyone finds it in their hearts, the willingness to forgive me," Wright said in a pre-written statement in front of the Federal Courthouse on Thursday.

The judge was initially charged with 9 counts of federal firearms violations. Attorney Joe Turner says 7 of those will be dismissed.

On Thursday, Wright pleaded guilty to selling firearms without a license and making false statements to a government agent.

Last month, his attorney Jeff Senter had a different viewpoint.

"We don't believe he was illegally selling firearms. We don't believe he made false statements to federal agents. We don't believe he was trafficking weapons to Mexico. We don't believe any of that," Senter said in April.

According to the Department of Justice, by pleading guilty Wright admitted to selling more than 60 firearms without a federal license to do so starting in June of last year.

The DOJ says many of those firearms were sold to two people illegally smuggling the guns into Mexico.

Attorney Joe Turner says on a personal note this is a sad ending to an otherwise stellar judicial career.

"Everyone in Williamson County and actually Travis County and everybody who appears in front of this judge loves him. They know how much he cares about the people that come in front of him. But he violated the federal statutes and as he said today he's going to hold himself accountable," Turner said.

James Spero, the Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in San Antonio sent us this statement saying that Wright's plea "sends a strong message that Homeland Security Investigations will not tolerate the unlawful sale of firearms, regardless of the defendant's position or status."

Judge Wright could face up to 60 months in prison. Sentencing will take place later this year.


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