Update: Police questioning person of interest in Judge Kocurek shooting

The man who the APD Chief Art Acevedo described as a person of interest in the shooting of Judge Kocurek is linked to the judge by a criminal case that originated in Rollingwood three years ago.

As Judge Kocurek continues her recovery, word that investigators were interviewing a person of interest in her shooting provided some comfort for friends like Judge Eric Shepperd.

"It sounds good, and I like the sound we are getting making forward progress, but until we get all the facts, we're judges, so until we actually get the facts out and hear what the facts are we won’t be able to feel the relief we need so we are still being vigilant because we dont know who is involved and we just know they have this one person,” said Judge Shepperd.

The man being questioned, identified as Chimene Onyeri, lives in Houston. But a trip to Austin in March of 2012 is how he ended up before Judge Kocurek. It’s also how in August, according to court documents obtained by FOX 7, Judge Kocurek started a probation revocation process against him. The case began with a routine traffic stop by a Rollingwood Police Detective, a stop that would become much bigger.

"Its hard, its hard to understand its hard to comprehend that this is a case that I put into that court,” said Detective Joel Martin.

The Rollnigwood identity theft investigation in 2012 linked Onyeri to a Nigerian crime ring, according to Martin.

"I traveled to Houston as part of the investigation and I did find there was a large group of individuals that was involved in this theft ring. The numbers are in the high hundreds of people that are involved in this ring unfortunately I was only able to identify 27 of them,” said martin.

Onyeri pled guilty and was given three-years probation. His revocation hearing before Judge Kocurek was set for early November but was moved to December 11Th. With time still left on the plea deal, the judge has the option of sending Onyeri to jail for at least a year because of new criminal violations he has allegedly committed.

Court documents show Onyeri has been involved in an aggravated robbery investigation, counterfeiting in Sugarland, another identity theft in Louisiana and as of Tuesday he is accused of murdering a Harris County man in May.

Tuesday afternoon, Houston police searched Onyeri's house. His father, who also met with detectives from Austin, Innocent Onyeri denied his son took part in the Friday night ambush of Judge Kocurek and said he saw his son sleeping in their Houston home on Friday.

"Most of the time, when I come back here he was sleeping in the house,” said Innocent Onyeri.

As for the alibi APD Chief Art Acevedo dismissed it, indicating his is not surprised that it was offered.

Austin Police Dept. Full Press Conference


According to authorities, Chimene Onyeri was questioned in Houston by police as a person of interest in the shooting of Judge Julie Kocurek. Onyeri has not been charged in the Kocurek case but was charged with murder in the May 2015 shooting death of Jacobi Demon Alexander in Harris County. 

Officials say that Onyeri is set for a December probation revocation hearing before Judge Kocurek in relation to a 2012 identity theft case.

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